Christopher Estrada (above), in a mug shot taken 10 days before his shooting death

Search Warrant Seeks Cell Phone Evidence In Alleged Murder Of St. Pete Transient

PINELLAS COUNTY, FL. – In October, news reports disclosed charges of “Second-Degree Murder” against Robert Deladurantaye, 49, a resident in the area of 46 Avenue North and Haines Road North.

On Saturday, October 24, he shot and killed a transient male, Christopher Estrada, which was partially captured by surveillance video. Deladurantaye was serving on “neighborhood watch” when the killing occurred.

A search warrant was requested and issued on November 16 in the Pinellas County court system to conduct forensics on Deladurantaye’s smartphone. The smartphone was in the custody of the St. Petersburg Police Department’s major crimes unit.

New revelations have been reported in the affidavit supporting the search warrant which states Estrada died of a gunshot wound to the neck:

Robert Deladurantaye told police that as he conducted an approximately 3:00 a.m. morning search as a neighborhood watch participant, he was suddenly scared by the presence of Estrada lying on a mattress in an alley.

Earlier in the day, the two had allegedly engaged in a heated argument, and had altercations in the past, which included threats to Deladurantaye’s fiancé whom he lived with. According to the Affidavit, Deladurantaye stated to police that at the time of the incident, “Estrada made threats to him and ran at him,” and that he then shot Estrada with his firearm of which he carries a concealed weapons permit.

Christopher Estrada (above), in a mug shot taken 10 days before his shooting death
Christopher Estrada (above), mug shot taken 10 days before his death

However, surveillance video from a local laundromat told an apparently different story to police.

According to the Affidavit, Deladurantaye was visually recorded as backing up from the alley as he discharged a bullet from his gun, but Estrada cannot be seen at any point in the video. Deladurantaye had told police that he fired a shot when Estrada “charged” him.

Other details were provided, including that Deladurantaye did not call 9-1-1 emergency services after the shooting. His fiancé made the call at his request. He returned home after the shooting, then the two walked back to the alleged crime scene.

The Affidavit states its interest to review any possible phone calls, text messages, photographs or other forms of communication that may help with the case, as Deladurantaye’s phone was illuminated after the shooting, according to the laundromat video.

A review of some complaints and arrests made against Christopher Estrada indicate numerous drug and progressively more violent altercations with victims. In one aggravated assault incident of August 2020, a victim fled from his workplace on Haines Road as Estrada swung a metal bike chain with a metal bike lock attached to it, threatening, “I’m going to hit you.”

This incident was the third event that police were called on that day pertaining to Estrada’s behavior.

St. Petersburg Police indicated on their Complaint/Affidavit Arrest that Estrada was not suspected of suffering from a mental illness.

In September, an assistant state attorney of Bernie McCabe’s office concluded that “the facts and circumstances” in the incident did not warrant prosecution against Estrada.

However, the new details revealed in the petition may raise questions about whether Deladurantaye should be prosecuted for murder. This is a developing story and we will update this as details are released in this case.

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