WARNING: Some of the content in this article could be considered graphic to some.
Rosa Garibay’s family is speaking out about her relationship with her husband Gonzalo Garibay. Gonzalo is accused of strangling Rosa and disposing her body in a remote area near Highway 33.
Her family says Rosa endured years of abuse by her husband but that she tried to make it work for her children. They say they are speaking out because they want people to know the truth about their relationship.
One of Rosa’s cousins says Rosa told her family about four weeks ago that she was ready to leave Gonzalo. The couple had been married for 22 years.
Rosa's family says she told them Gonzalo cheated on her and was abusive since the beginning of their marriage and he would go missing for days at a time. Family says when she questioned him about his whereabouts, he would hit her.
The family also gave new details about the days leading up to the arrest. They say Rosa had decided to move on. The Friday before she disappeared, she went out on a dinner date with a friend. According to Rosa’s cousin, when Rosa was leaving dinner, Gonzalo assaulted both her and the man she was with. Her cousin says Rosa slept in her car that night, at a gas station out of fear.
Her family says, the next day Rosa came home from work to get ready for a baptism with her children but she never showed up.
Rosa’s cousin says Gonzalo called Rosa’s family this past weekend from jail and confessed to the crime, telling them he strangled her and that he was sorry.
Domestic violence experts with the Alliance Against Family Violence wouldn't comment on this case but urge anyone who may be a victim or who may know a victim to speak up and get help.
Rosa's family says she was ready to make the change and leave with her children, but it was too late.
23ABC News has requested to speak with Gonzalo Garibay from behind bars several times, but he has denied each request from the Kern County Jail. He is being held there without bail, and he is due back in court on Monday, August 1.
If you need help getting out of an abusive relationship call the 24-hour hotline at 327-1091 or the outreach center at 322-0931.