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Mental Competency Evaluation Ordered for North County Woman Accused of Killing Son-In-Law

Patch file photo.
Patch file photo.

A mental competency evaluation was ordered today for a woman accused of fatally shooting her son-in-law in the house they shared in a gated Fallbrook community.

Cynthia Katherine Cdebaca, 63, is charged with murder and personal discharge of a firearm in the death of Geoward Flores Eustaquio.

Vista Judge K. Michael Kirkman suspended criminal proceedings against the defendant and scheduled an Aug. 6 hearing.

Around 8 a.m. on Feb. 11, Cdebaca and the 53-year-old Eustaquio were the only people in the home when he made a comment to her about what she was wearing, according to Deputy District Attorney Tracy Prior.

In response to the comment, the defendant went to her "granny flat" adjacent to the home and retrieved a .38-caliber, five-shot revolver that she had purchased about two weeks earlier, according to Prior.

Cdebaca came down the stairs and fired all five rounds at Eustaquio as he stood in a patio area between the house and the granny flat, the prosecutor alleged.

When Cdebaca realized that her son-in-law was not dead, she walked to her car in the driveway—where she had a box of ammunition—and reloaded the gun before firing five more shots, Prior alleged.

Recognizing that Eustaquio was still alive and was trying to crawl into the home and lock the door, Cdebaca returned to her car to reload the gun and allegedly fired five more times at the victim, according to the prosecutor.

An autopsy revealed seven .38-caliber bullets in the victim's body as well as four other holes where bullets had entered and exited, Prior said.

"She (the defendant) then left the residence, tossed the gun in a nearby drainage ditch and threw the ammunition away," Prior alleged at Cdebaca's arraignment. "She then went to Denny's for breakfast, she went to Pechanga (Casino) for gambling, she went to the liquor store for cigarettes and she went to her favorite coffee shop to end her day."

Around 5 p.m. that day, officers caught up with Cdebaca, who originally denied knowing that Eustaquio was dead and denied any involvement, Prior said. Later that night, however, Cdebaca told police she was responsible, stating that the victim "better be dead," the prosecutor alleged.

—City News Service

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