A woman was last seen leaving her birthday celebration. Police say they arrested the man who raped and murdered her.

rape murder
Source: Moses Lake police; MEGA

Mar. 11 2022, Published 2:28 p.m. ET

Link to FacebookShare to XShare to Email

On March 4, a woman was reported missing in Washington. Days later, police say they arrested a man responsible for her rape and murder.

The arrest comes as police still haven’t found the victim’s remains.

Article continues below advertisement

Around 10 a.m. on March 4, police took a missing person report for Yanira Cedillos, 30. She was last seen celebrating her birth the night before, according to Moses Lake police.

Witness said throughout the night a man she used to live with called, texted and sent Snapchats asking what she was doing, according to Moses Lake police. The man was identified as Juan Gastelum, 27.

Article continues below advertisement

Around midnight, Cedillos was in the parking lot of a bar when an argument started with friends, police noted. She walked away and later called a friend asking for a ride. When the friend went to pick her up, Cedillos was nowhere to be found.

The friend called Cedillos and could hear a man yelling in the background before the call was disconnected, police stated. Cedillos then called back and said she was OK. That was the last time anyone heard from her.

Article continues below advertisement

Police investigated and Gastelum was corporative, according to police. Investigators said Gastelum picked up Cedillos and took her back to her apartment.

There was evidence that she was killed there, and her body moved after her death.


Gastelum left the apartment and drove around the area and was seen on video the morning cleaning his car and disposing of evidence at a gas station, according to Moses Lake police.

Article continues below advertisement

Police didn’t initially arrest Gastelum with the hope he would lead them to Cedillos. To date, she has not been found.

Gastelum was arrested this week and charged with second-degree rape and second-degree murder, police noted.

Article continues below advertisement

Investigators continue to search for Cedillos and hope to narrow down the area where her remains could be located.

rape murder
Source: Moses Lake police; MEGA

Become a Front Page Detective

Sign up to receive breaking
Front Page Detectives
news and exclusive investigations.

More Stories

Opt-out of personalized ads

© Copyright 2023 Empire Media Group, Inc. Front Page Detectives is a registered trademark. All Rights Reserved. People may receive compensation for some links to products and services on this website. Offers may be subject to change without notice.