Vigil to Mark Third Anniversary of Unsolved Murder

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Ashley Yamauchi

SAN RAFAEL — Friends of Ashley Yamauchi plan to gather on Dec. 16, the third anniversary of her murder, and ask the public for help in solving the case.

Yamauchi, 33, of Foster City was last seen on the night of Dec. 15, 2008 at the Fourth Street Tavern, 711 Fourth St. in downtown San Rafael. Her body was found in a parking lot on the 700 block of Fourth Street. Police said she was sexually assaulted and asphyxiated. No suspect has been identified.

Yamauchi worked as a nanny for a San Rafael family. Survivors include her daughter, who was 8 at the time, her mother and two brothers.

Her friends have established a Facebook page (R.I.P. Ashley Yamauchi) to post updates and to share remembrances and photos. Many have lamented the lack of progress in the investigation. Yamauchi’s brother Heath Yamaguchi recently posted a poem in her memory.

A vigil will be held in front of the tavern on Friday from 6:30 to 11:30 p.m. Similar events were held on the first and second anniversaries.

The San Rafael Police Department has posted a flyer, available in both English and Spanish, offering a $50,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the killer or killers. Tips can be given by phone at (415) 458-2399 or by email at [email protected]

The reward was approved by then-Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger a year ago. Assemblymember Jared Huffman, who represents San Rafael, said at the time, “I hope that the reward will help bring Ashley Yamauchi’s killer to justice and in doing so provide closure for the family.”

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