French authorities investigate SF man's death

January 26, 2009 12:00:00 AM PST
There is a new twist in the case of a French -American man found dead in San Francisco two years ago. French investigators have concluded the death was murder, a finding at odds with the determination of San Francisco officials.

For nearly two years family and friends have been searching for answers in the death of Hugues de la Plaza, a 36-year-old with dual French-U.S. citizenship. De la Plaza was found dead in his San Francisco apartment from multiple stab wounds June 2, 2007.

"Hugues was the love of my life," Melissa Nix said. Nix believes San Francisco authorities bungled the case.

The medical examiner ruled it an undetermined death. Nix said the police told the family it was suicide.

De la Plaza's parents found the conclusion to be unacceptable and last year they convinced a French judge and detectives to take the rare step of coming to San Francisco to conduct their own investigation. The French investigators have concluded it was murder.

"One of the coroners said there is no way, that with the intensity of the wounds, could they have been self-inflicted," Nix said.

De la Plaza's death has been a high profile case in France. A French television crew is in San Francisco following every twist and turn.

The death took place in supervisor Ross Mirkarimi's district. He plans to formally request the report from the French government.

"We need to do our best to get proper closure for this particular case, we owe it to the victim's family and friends, we owe it to the people of San Francisco," Mikrarimi said.

The San Francisco Police Department says its investigation is still on-going.

"It may possibly give us information we didn't have, or it may not, we're not exactly sure, until we receive the actual documentation," department spokesperson Sgt. Wilfred Williams said.

"What I'm waiting for is the SFPD to give up its game and call it what it is: murder," Nix said.

De la Plaza's parents are planning to come to San Francisco next month to offer a $100,000 reward for information in the case.


Load Comments