There has been no official word about how the body of Erica Alonso wound up where it did.
However, an Orange County politician’s proposed bill inspired by the Alonso saga would indicate the pretty 27-year-old did not walk on her own to a remote spot in the Cleveland National Forest and collapse.
Orange County sheriff’s investigators concluded the Laguna Hills woman was not the victim of the homicide. An autopsy found she had GHB and a lethal dose of alcohol—nearly three times the legal limit for driving—in her system.
So with her white 2014 Honda Civic EX having been found near Cedarbrook and Redwood in the Glenwood Park neighborhood of Aliso Viejo on March 25, 2015, the question is how did the body of Alonso wind up where it was found by state transportation workers a month and two days later? That would be about a mile east of the San Juan Capistrano Fire-Ranger station on Ortega Highway, near Hot Springs Road.
State Sen. Janet Nguyen (R-Garden Grove) said it was “evident” that Alonso’s body was moved there to conceal her demise, and at the urging of the deceased woman’s family the politician has introduced legislation to stiffen penalties for “dumping” bodies.
“The disappearance and death of Erica Alonso was unsettling to residents throughout Orange County and was especially heartbreaking to Ms. Alonso’s parents, who endured prolonged suffering due to the delayed investigation caused by the removal of her body,” Nguyen explained.
“While Ms. Alonso’s death may not have been a homicide, the individuals who moved her body chose to interfere rather than cooperate with authorities. The ramifications of these careless actions are immeasurable, and I believe a judge deserves discretion in cases like this to administer a higher penalty.”
The wee hours after partying for Valentine’s Day with her on-again, off-again boyfriend at Sutra, the couple returned with another couple they met that night to the boyfriend’s Irvine home. Shortly after the couple left and Alonso exchanged words with her boyfriend, she left alone around 3:45 a.m., according to the timeline of the investigation.
Current state law regarding the dumping of bodies has penalties about equal to petty theft, something Nguyen says “disturbs” her as “an advocate for public safety and a mother.”