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California Man Kills Girlfriend and Disposes of Body in Trash Bag

Friends and family believe that Pleasanton police officers did not take the required steps to stop the tragedy.
Cover Image Source: YouTube/KTVU FOX 2 San Francisco
Cover Image Source: YouTube/KTVU FOX 2 San Francisco

A man from California has been found guilty of killing his girlfriend and disposing of her body. Joseph Roberts, 43, from Pleasanton, has been sentenced to 15 years to life, for the murder of his 27-year-old girlfriend, Rachel Elizabeth Imani Buckner, People reported.

Representative Image Source: Pexels | Photo by  Julia Filirovska
Representative Image Source: Pexels | Photo by Julia Filirovska

On July 20, 2023, officers from the Alameda Police Department responded to a suspicious circumstance report, Alameda County District Attorney, Pamela Price, stated. Officers found a woman's dismembered body parts in a trash bag at Harbor Bay Club on Bay Farm Island. After investigation, the victim was identified as Rachel Buckner.

Roberts' DNA was found on the duct tape that was used to seal the trash bag, the District Attorney stated.

Roberts and Rachel Buckner had been dating each other for a while. The couple met at Golden Gate University Law School in 2019. At the time of Rachel Buckner's death, they were living together in an apartment in Pleasanton.

Police records show that before Rachel Buckner's death, Pleasanton police officers had been called multiple times into the couple's house for welfare checks and domestic violence calls, the District Attorney stated.


Roberts was taken into custody and he went for a trial. The jury after deliberating for less than a day, came back with a guilty verdict for the charge of second-degree murder.

"I first want to thank the jury for their work in delivering this guilty verdict," District Attorney, Pamela Price said.

"I also want to thank the City of Alameda Police Department, the FBI, and the Alameda County Sheriff’s Office for their diligent investigation... Today’s verdict brings justice not only to Rachel Elizabeth Imani Buckner but also to her daughter, her immediate and extended family, and our community. What happened to Rachel Elizabeth Imani Buckner is unimaginable. The condition of her body when it was found shocks our humanity," Price said.


Friends and family believe that the Pleasanton police officers did not take the required steps to stop the tragedy, Fox KTVU reported. The acquaintances claim that enough evidence was present with officials to take steps against Roberts.

"They should have arrested him on the spot, regardless of what she said," S. Jamila Buckner, the victim's mother, said. "We watched body-cam footage of them chatting it up as he was beating her down!"

Family Friend Judith Klain added, "Seventeen times the police came out and did barely anything. This is an injustice that should never have happened," Fox KTVU reported.


S. Jamila Buckner demands that more training be given to officers for dealing with domestic violence cases, Fox KTVU reported.

"The first time my daughter called, they should have looked in the records. If they looked in the records, they would have seen that Joseph Roberts came and beat the hell out of me and my mother," she said. "He was a dangerous man, even before she first called."

The victim's family was satisfied with the verdict, NBC Bay Area reported. "Justice has been served, and we can now feel, we won't have the trauma that I and my family have faced for the last four years by Joseph C. Roberts," said S. Jamila Buckner.

Apart from the sentence, Roberts has also been ordered to pay $19,818 in restitution for his charges, People reported.

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