U.S. prosecutors will not press charges in a previous federal investigation into the October death in Mexico of Shanquella Robinson, a woman from Charlotte, North Carolina.
Officials at the U.S. attorney’s office for two North Carolina counties made the decision in a statement Wednesday, just before the woman’s family was scheduled to speak at a televised news conference about the investigation and Robinson’s killing.
Citing a “detailed and thorough investigation” and autopsy results conducted by the Mecklenburg County Medical Examiner’s Office in North Carolina, officials said they concluded that “the available evidence does not support any of the federal charges.”
“The investigation into the circumstances of Ms. Robinson’s death is a top priority for federal prosecutors and the FBI,” the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of North Carolina said in a statement.
“As with any case under review by federal prosecutors, the government must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that a federal crime has been committed,” she continued. “Following the results of the autopsy and after careful deliberation and review of investigative materials by two U.S. Attorneys, federal prosecutors informed Ms. Robinson’s family today that the available evidence does not support a federal indictment.”
The FBI’s federal prosecutors and FBI agencies began investigating the circumstances surrounding Robinson’s death in November, about three weeks after Robinson’s death, the FBI confirmed in a statement to CBS News at the time. Robinson died on or about October 29 in Cabo San Lucas, according to the statement. Last week, Mexican authorities said her death occurred in San Jose del Cabo, about 20 miles northeast of Cabo San Lucas in the same Mexican state of Baja California Sur.
A few days ago, Mexican prosecutors opened an investigation into Robinson’s death. By then, news of her assassination had drawn widespread public and global attention after a viral cellphone video showed Robinson being violently attacked, apparently at the luxury villa where she was staying on vacation. She traveled from the United States to Mexico with six friends, some of whom initially told Robinson’s parents died of alcohol poisoning. However, the death certificate later listed spinal and neck injuries as the cause of death.
Mexican authorities said in November they were investigating Robinson’s death as femicide, the killing of a woman because of her gender. In a statement released at the time, prosecutors in Baja California Sur said they were trying to extradite a woman suspected of murder from the United States to Mexico.