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Esteban Trial: Computer Showed Hundreds of Searches for 'Michelle Le'

According to a testimony, Esteban's computer also showed searches for ways to harm someone, including how to induce a heart attack without leaving a trace, how to follow someone without being caught, and how to break locks, deadbolts and doors.

By Bay City News Service

OAKLAND — An expert testified today that a computer belonging to Giselle Esteban, the Union City woman accused of murdering nursing student Michelle Le last year, showed hundreds of searches for Le's name shortly before she disappeared, as well as searches for ways to harm someone.

Esteban, 28, is suspected of killing Le, a former friend whom she had attended high school with in San Diego. Le, a 26-year-old San Mateo resident, was studying nursing at Samuel Merritt University in Oakland at the time of her death.

FBI computer forensic examiner Jann Hayes testified that when she examined Esteban's computer shortly after Le went missing in May 2011, she found about 300 Internet searches for Le's name.

"It immediately became apparent there were a large number of instances of 'Michelle Le'" searches, Hayes said.

In addition, Hayes said, the computer showed that someone had researched ways of inducing a heart attack without leaving a trace, how to follow someone without being caught, and how to break locks, deadbolts and doors.

Other searches focused on potassium chloride, highly toxic gases and carbon monoxide.

Prosecutor Butch Ford alleged in his opening statement two weeks ago that Esteban killed Le out of "jealousy, hatred and rage" because she blamed Le for wrecking her relationship with her daughter's father, Scott Marasigan.

Marasigan testified that he dated Le for a month in 2003 but never had sex with her. He said his friendship with Le didn't interfere with his relationship with Esteban, with whom he had an off-and-on relationship before winning sole custody of their daughter and permanently splitting with her.

Le disappeared from Kaiser Permanente Medical Center in Hayward around 7 p.m. on May 27, 2011.

Ford said DNA evidence, videotapes and cellphone records support the theory that Esteban attacked Le in the parking lot at Kaiser and then drove Le's body to the remote area between Pleasanton and Sunol where it was found nearly four months later.

Defense attorney Andrea Auer said in her opening statement that Esteban did not plan to kill Le but instead snapped as a result of "extreme provocation and heat of passion."

Ford said he expects to finish presenting his case on Tuesday.

Zinn October 16, 2012 at 05:14 PM
You know you wonder how someone could get so full of hate that they would plot to kill a friend over some sort of perceived intimate relationship with an ex boyfriend. Just flabbergasting...
Edward October 16, 2012 at 05:37 PM
How do you know that the searches about causes of death were no related to her nursing Studies? How many have done serches on family and friends to see what is out there? Both are circumstantial in nature and would only lead to further investigation. You can not convict someone becasue they are curiouse.
Edward October 16, 2012 at 05:45 PM
So far, they have not been able to prove the case without reasonable doubt. The smoking gun placing her at the Garage with the victum or being at the body disposal site, are still missing. DNA in a Car only means that someone rode in that car and as friends they could have had a lot of DNA in each others cars or homes. DNA on a Murder Weapon or arround where the body was found could place Ms Estaban There but nothing yet at the recovery site. Someone else could have done the deed and Ms. Estaban could have been just to curiouse for her own good.
Zinn October 16, 2012 at 06:18 PM
Edward, Estaban was not a nursing student. Her victim, Michele Le, was.. Estaban's attorney in opening arguments has already stated Estaban killed her but it was a "crime of passion" not premeditated. Jesus Christ..
Zinn October 16, 2012 at 06:20 PM
Her attorney already admitted she killed her.. She is trying to get out of a first degree murder conviction. Go back to watching CSI...
Sue October 18, 2012 at 08:16 PM
Edward, go back to watching "Romper Room." You obviously aren't getting it, or have a problem comprehending what you read.
Zinn October 18, 2012 at 08:45 PM
From the opening arguments transcript, Defense Attorney Adrea Aur stated: >> Esteban didn't premeditate killing Le but instead acted "out of extraordinary provocation and the heat of passion."<< So Sue, who has a problem reading??

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