Katherine Escalante Castilla

Katherine Escalante Castilla was the president of the Board of Civil Defense in Aguachica, Colombia. She was dedicated to her work having started volunteering with the Civil Defense when she was just 13 years old.

On May 15 2017, Katherine was travelling from Aguachica to Bucaramanga and was last seen in Parque Centanario. Her family began to grow worried when she was not answering her phone calls or text messages. A search party was organised to look for Katherine but for one month they had no success in finding her.

The authorities eventually discovered that Katherine had been sent money by Elizaldo Aguilar García, a professional solider in the National Army, in order for her to travel to Socorro to meet up with him. He used a taxi driver as a second person to transfer the money to her. Elizaldo then voluntarily confessed to murdering Katherine in his house by hitting her on the head with an axe while they were having an argument. He has been given a sentence of 22 and half years in prison.

If you would like to provide a personal recollection, please email us at: HRDMemorial@frontlinedefenders.org





Date of Killing:15/05/2017

Previous Threats:No information

Type of Work:Community leader

Organisation:Defensa Civil Aguachica

Sector or Type of Rights the HRD Worked On:ESC Rights

Sector Detail:Citizens' rights

More information:Front Line Defenders

1This database records an individual's chosen gender identity. If they do not self-identify as male or female they can use the option of recording other/neither or use the term NBGI (non binary gender identity).