LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - February 5, 2018 marks the one year anniversary of the day 20-year-old Katrina Castillo was found murdered in the back of a home in the 4200 block of East 2nd street. Since that day, Xavier Garcia has been charged with capital murder in the case. Now, we are hearing from Katrina’s mother and grandmother for the first time on what it was like on that tragic day and what its like now a year later.
Back on February 5, 2018, a homeowner just outside Lubbock city limits made a horrifying discovery in the backyard of her home. When officials with the Lubbock County Sheriff Office arrived, they found a woman’s body bound and brutally stabbed to death. That body was later identified as Katrina Castillo.
Katrina’s mother, Christina Castillo, remembers that day vividly. She says she didn’t know her daughter had been killed, but her mother’s intuition kicked in immediately. “I had this ugly feeling that something was wrong, but I didn’t know what it was. I would say this was the first time I had a panic attack. I dropped to my knees, I started crying, and I started praying, but I didn’t know what I was praying for. I just felt defeated.”
Later that night, officials with the Lubbock County Sheriff’s Office identified it as Katrina. Not even 24 hours later, Xavier Garcia was arrested and named a person of interest. Katrina’s mom says Xavier and her daughter knew each other because she was best friends with Xavier’s sister. He is now in the Lubbock County Detention Center awaiting a trial for capital murder.
Since then, 365 days have passed, but and Katrina’s mother and grandmother say it still feels like just yesterday. “There’s some days that I can walk out the house and be okay, but there’s other days where I can’t believe this is even happening or how I’m still breathing myself.”
Katrina is described as full of life. Her grandmother, Marina Gonzales, says she cared about everyone and anyone. “She wasn’t the type of person who would judge anybody. I mean you could be the rottenest person ever, but to her everybody was beautiful.”
Katrina’s mom says she loved her family and friends, but she had a soft spot for makeup and glitter. “I would just see a little sparkle in the corner of her eye, I would see it on her little lips, I’d see it on her nail, I’d see it on her clothes, and then I’d see it on her jewelry. It got to the point where anywhere she went she had glitter everywhere.”
Christina says her daughter’s dream was to have a full-time job making people feel beautiful through cosmetology. “Her whole envision was to have this white salon with these big diamond mirrors, chandeliers on top of it, ring light at each station, a bar with neon lights, and a DJ with all her family working for her."
Even though her dream didn’t come true while she was still on earth, Christina knows her daughter is doing what she loves up in heaven. “I think with what happened to her was a horrible thing, but I try to look at it in a positive way. I hope God told her that this had to happen to you to open doors for others, to open the heart of others, to bring people back to me, and because of what’s happened to you, thousands of people are going to be saved.”
To honor Katrina, her mom has created a scholarship called ‘Katrina’s Gift’ that will be given to one cosmetology student who had the same dream of making people beautiful just like her daughter did. To donate click here. The family is also selling shirts to raise money for it, too.