The 1974 murder of Stephen Miera

The 1974 murder of Stephen Miera was discussed in the Albuquerque Journal of August 7, 1974. His family is still searching for answers and has contacted me.

What do we know?

Stephen was found bludgeoned to death in his Hawthorne (CA) real estate and insurance agency. His body was found by an employee on August 3rd, 1974. This employee came to the office to work. Stephen was last seen alive by employees as they left work around 7pm, Friday evening, August 2nd, 1974.

His date of birth was July 11, 1928, and his full name was Stephen Maurice Miera Jr.

Before Stephen got involved in real estate, he worked as an engineer. He left Albuquerque in 1959 to work at the Space Technical Labs in Inglewood, CA. He also worked for Lear-Siegler Corp. in Santa Monica (CA) and North American Aviation in Downey (CA).

Photograph courtesy Antonia Light

Photograph courtesy Antonia Light

The Miera family has tried to get media attention for the case and has contacted the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department as recently as November 2000.

A letter sent to one of the relatives confirms that Stephen was found on August 3, 1974. The cause of death was blunt force trauma to the head. The weapon was a hammer that was kept in the office for posting real estate signs.

There is the possibility that “an unknown amount of money was stolen but, robbery was not suspected to be the primary motive for the murder.” I wonder whether that hammer was preserved and if so, was it ever tested for biological materials that can be submitted for DNA testing?

According to police, Stephen had a habit of working alone late at night and according to employees, he was doing exactly that on the night he died. There are rumours that he also entertained women late at night in the office.

Despite an investigation, police were never able to find a suspect and no arrest was ever made in this case.

If you knew Stephen Miera or, if you have any information at all about him, the night he died, his character or habits, contact the Hawthorne Police Department at (310) 349-2700.

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