Press Release


Homicide Suspect Arrested

Kittitas County, WA - 01/17/2018 - Detectives from the Kittitas County Sheriff's Major Crimes Unit have arrested 25 year old Christopher Almaral of Ellensburg for the murder of Stephanie Curtis.

The investigation into the death of Ms. Curtis, who's body was found about 7:30 AM near MP. 21 on SR 821 about 4 miles South of Ellensburg, led the investigators to several businesses in Yakima County where security footage put the victim and suspect together the night before her body was found. Security Footage also provided a vehicle description and time they left a Casino in the Toppenish area. 

During the course of the investigation, one of the Sheriff's Detectives observed the vehicle in Ellensburg and obtained the license plate number, which associated it with a residence in Ellensburg. After searching hours of traffic video, investigators were able to identify the same vehicle entering, leaving and re-entering Ellensburg in the early morning hours, between the time the victim and suspect left Toppenish and the time her body was found.

A search of the suspect's vehicle and home resulted in the seizure of a .38 caliber handgun and a sawed off shotgun. The handgun is consistent with the wound characteristics and bullets recovered from the victim's body.

Mr. Almaral was arrested without incident and was booked into the Kittitas County Jail, pending charges for 1st degree murder.

Per Undersheriff Myers, "This case was solved as a result of multiple law enforcement agencies, members of the public and business owners providing cooperation and assistance to the Sheriff's Detectives, with a special thanks to the Yakima Police Department for their support. It's both humbling and an honor to work with people this dedicated to the safety of our community."

Kittitas County, from the Cascades to the Columbia, and online at


Contact: Clay Myers, Undersheriff