The family of Elliot Blair, an Orange County public defender who died in Mexico while celebrating his one-year wedding anniversary, is speaking out on Tuesday, claiming his death was a “brutal crime” and not an accident.
Blair, 33, died early Saturday at Las Rocas Resort and Spa in Rosarito after authorities said he was intoxicated and fell from a fourth-floor balcony, according to Patrulla 646, a news website in Mexico.
The family has released a statement, saying they have extensive legal training in criminal law and believe Elliot was the victim of a brutal crime. David Scarsone, the family’s attorney, said that the family has not received much communication from Mexican officials and the only communication they have had is through a liaison to the coroner’s office on Monday. The toxicology report had not been completed at the time.
The family also expressed their suspicion that Elliot’s body was to be cremated, only for them to find out from a news article that Mexican officials were calling the case an “unfortunate accident.” In response, the family has said they will be conducting their own investigation through a private firm and retaining their own forensic path.
Kim, Elliot’s wife, claims she was given “multiple versions of what happened to Elliot” throughout the investigation. She also noted that the incident did not happen off their room’s private balcony and instead happened in an open-air walkway outside of their room’s front door. The family also claims that Elliot was not intoxicated at the time of his death and he was found wearing only his underwear, sleeping shirt and socks.
Elliot had worked for the public defender’s office since 2017 and was described by his colleagues as a brilliant attorney with a bright future. His family said that he had an innate ability to connect with people from all walks of life and his death has left them and their community with a huge hole in their hearts that will never be repaired.
A GoFundMe campaign was created to support Blair’s widow, Kim, with the process of returning Blair’s body to the U.S. and “dealing with all the red tape.” Martin Schwarz, a colleague in the Orange County Public Defender’s Office, said they are working with local and federal officials to help provide the family with answers.