When Kira Steger went missing in February 2013, little did her friends and family know of the tragedy that befell her. With no trace of the missing woman anywhere, the police were involved, and the ensuing investigation unraveled a chilling murder that terrified the local community. ID’s ‘Ice Cold Killers: Ice Breaker’ as well as Hulu’s ‘Me, Hereafter: Last Seen at the Mall’ chronicles her shocking murder and unravels how the victim’s body was discovered months after vanishing off the face of the earth.
Kira Steger Was Found Dead in Mississippi
Although originally from Wisconsin, Kira resided with her husband in their East Iowa Avenue home in St. Paul, Minnesota, and was much loved by the local community. She was employed as a co-manager in a clothing store at the Mall of America. Described as a kind soul full of life and energy, her friends and family mourn her untimely passing to this day. After all, despite the initial months of 2013 being a rough time for locals owing to it being one of the harshest winters the city had ever seen, no one could’ve ever imagined they would soon end up facing other harsh realities too.
Being a diligent employee, Kira actually refused to miss a single day of work even in bad weather. So when she didn’t turn up for work on the morning of February 22, 2013, following a date night with her husband at the mall itself, her co-workers grew worried. Alarmed, they as well as family members tried reaching her on her cell phone, but to no avail. No calls or texts were ever returned. Worried and anxious, they thus contacted the police to inform them of her mysterious disappearance.
Officers subsequently carried out multiple searches for this missing woman and finally found a duct tape roll at Keller Lake Regional Park in Maplewood, which had human as well as white animal hair on it. Authorities believed it to have a connection to Kira’s vanishing as she did own a white dog, as seen above. Later, a blood-stained pillow, sweatshirt, and sports bra were also recovered from near Keller Lake, which the law enforcement officials soon matched with Kira’s DNA.
Furthermore, Kira’s car was found abandoned in a parking ramp at the same mall where she worked. On searching the vehicle, authorities found bloodstains in the trunk. Alarmed, they got out a warrant for her residence, and a thorough search revealed further bloodstains. Moreover, during their investigation, officials also found out that her marriage was going through a rough patch.
The victim was allegedly having an affair with a co-worker and had sent her last-ever text to him at 11:44 pm before disappearing. But alas, it wasn’t until May 2013 that Kira’s body was located – a barge worker located her all the way in Mississippi. Upon recovery, the police noticed she was stark naked with a piece of duct tape stuck to her hair. A medical examination then showed that Kira’s left index finger was broken, and she had a head wound. She was also found to have a bruise inside her lip, and the autopsy further found her liver to be lacerated. Authorities believed that death was caused by smothering.
Kira Steger Was Killed by an Unexpected Individual
Kira Steger’s husband, Jeffery “Jeff” Trevino, was convicted of her murder in October 2013. It turns out officials had their suspicions about his involvement in the matter since they first learned of their troubled marriage. That’s because they also discovered that Kira was about to file for divorce. After finding the bloodstains in the car and the house Kira shared with Jeffery, suspicions were heightened, and detectives believed that he killed his wife moments after she sent that last text at 11:44 pm.
Prosecutors later alleged that Jeffery crossed the height of his patience when he found out about his wife’s alleged affair. They claimed that during the date night Kira was last seen on, she had been texting her co-worker nonstop while being with her husband. It is believed that upon returning home, he found out who she was texting, and the couple got into an altercation which allegedly led to the murder. They asserted that Jeffery forced a pillow on his wife’s face and killed her that way. Once tests matched the bloodstains to Kira’s DNA, the police arrested Jeffery and charged him with his wife’s murder.
Jeffery Trevino is Now Behind Bars
Once produced in court, Jeffery pleaded not guilty. While prosecutors alleged he killed his wife in a fit of rage upon finding out about her alleged affair, the defense claimed the amount of blood was too little for a conviction. Ultimately, the jury concluded that Jeffery had killed his wife, although they could not unanimously decide if it was intentional. Thus, Jeffery Trevino was convicted of second-degree unintentional murder in October 2013 and was sentenced to 27 and a half years in prison.
Later, Jeffery appealed his conviction and sought a new trial as he claimed that his original conviction was based on circumstantial evidence. However, the court did not agree with his appeal and turned it down in 2015. A year later, he was also sued by Kira’s family for wrongful death. Therefore, today, at the age of 50, he remains incarcerated at the medium-security Minnesota Correctional Facility in Faribault and will be eligible for parole in June 2031. If denied, his sentence will expire on August 24, 2040.