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September 9, 2011 > Arrest in Michelle Le case

Arrest in Michelle Le case

Submitted By Lt. Roger Keener, Hayward PD

Hayward Police Department has been committed to finding Michelle Le and establishing the circumstances that led to her disappearance. On September 6, 2011, an Alameda County Superior Court judge authorized a probable-cause arrest warrant in the name of Giselle Esteban for the crime of murder. Esteban was arrested at 10 a.m. on September 7, 2011 as she left her residence in Union City.

Le, a 26-year old nursing student was at Kaiser Hospital, Hayward, as part of her training on May 27. At approximately 7 p.m., she told a fellow student she was going to walk to her car during the break. She was seen doing so at about that time but never returned to class. She had informed some of her classmates that she and a friend would drive to Nevada, immediately after class, to visit a friend in Reno. Le was still absent when class ended. Her instructor reported her missing to Hayward Police Department after checking the parking structure without detecting any sign of her.

Hayward PD immediately launched a search which included cell phone and cell tower analysis. Le's car was found the next morning half-a-mile away from Kaiser, locked and secure, at Ponderosa Court. Initial cell phone analysis (with FBI help) indicated that her phone had traveled from the Kaiser area to the Niles and Sunol Canyon areas which were subjected to ground-and-air search, including the use of aerial infrared devices and rescue K9 teams, but Le was not found.

In the wake of the initial searches during the weekend of Le's disappearance, there were multiple searches by teams comprising between five and 65 specially trained members, depending on the terrain. The Le family has made incredible efforts, organizing seven searches in addition to those by Hayward PD. They have mobilized the help and support of hundreds of community volunteers and assistance from the Klaas Kids Foundation.

Compelling evidence that led to Esteban's arrest for Le's murder includes blood stains belonging to Le inside Le's car; security camera footage at the Kaiser Hospital parking structure, where Le's car had been parked, showing Esteban was present before and after Le's disappearance; physical evidence proving Esteban had been inside Le's vehicle; cell phone records and cell tower activations showing Le and Esteban's phones traveled a similar path from the Kaiser Hospital area toward other locations within Alameda County immediately after Le's disappearance; a search of Esteban's residence on May 29 recovered a pair of athletic shoes, which Esteban requested to wear and bore Le's DNA on one of the shoes.

The September 7 arrest is one step in a continuing investigation which will not be completed until Le has been found. Hayward PD will now present the investigation to the Alameda County DA's office for review.

If someone has information regarding the disappearance of Michelle Le or knows where she might be, please contact private investigator, Michael Frame, at (925) 837-8309 ext. 33 or by email to Anonymous emails can be sent through the website

Alternatively, please call the Tip Line for this case at (510) 293-5051.

For more information, visit

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