Shanquella Robinson, a 25-year-old Charlotte, N.C. native, was found dead one day into a vacation with friends in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. Her mother, Salamondra, has since raised concerns after her autopsy showed the young hairdresser’s cause of death was listed as severe spinal cord injury and atlas luxation, meaning instability in the uppermost vertebrae. Robinson reportedly died 15 minutes after sustaining these injuries.
When Robinson informed her mother of the trip on Oct. 28, it was explained that she and the seven additional guests were supposed to be enjoying a night at their shared temporary home, Villa Linda 32.
“They had a villa, and they stayed there all night,” Salamondra told Queen City News. “They didn’t go out at all. She told me they had a chef. They were getting ready to eat. They were eating tacos or a salad or something, and I said, ‘OK. I love you. Have a good night, and I will talk to you tomorrow.’”
Despite the friends insisting Robinson died from alcohol poisoning, a video has surfaced of her being brutally beaten by another unidentified woman. As Robinson fell to the ground, the assailant continued to punch her head as someone else urged Robinson to fight back.
As the U.S. State Department became aware of the incident, Mexican authorities claimed no clear evidence was obtained to prove Robinson was murdered, prompting a #JusticeForShanquella movement on social media.
Salamondra added, “No one told the same story, so I never believed them anyway.” It also took two weeks and $6,000 for Robinson’s body to return to the U.S..
Many are comparing Robinson’s death to the mysterious albeit controversial deaths of Kenneka Jenkins, Tamla Horsford, and Lauren Smith Field.
Salamondra, however, remains hopeful that justice will be served. She explained to Queen City News, “She had a heart of gold. She loved everybody, and pretty much everybody loved her. I know that’s not going to bring my child back, but I want something done about it.”