Selena Quintanilla’s Killer, Yolanda Saldivar, Would Soon Be Released from Jail

Yolanda Saldivar was the leader of Selena Quintanilla's fan club and was sentenced to life imprisonment.

Isabel Cara

mujer vestida de negro con mujer de vestido blanco

Yolanda Saldívar was in charge of taking away the voice of one of the best Latino singers in history… On March 31, 1995, television, radio, and newspapers announced the death of Selena Quintanilla, at the hands of her biggest fan.

The terrible and unexpected crime led Yolanda to be sentenced to life imprisonment; however, life would be smiling on her, as she could be released from prison very soon.

How Did Yolanda and Selena Meet?

Yolanda fell in love with Selena‘s voice almost immediately, which motivated her to form and preside over the fan club of the so-called ‘Queen of Tex-Mex.’ The woman, who was a nurse of Mexican descent, appeared at each of her presentations. Her goal was to be close to the celebrity, so her faithful and constant support was enough for Selena to trust her.

The relationship grew stronger to the point that the singer hired her as manager of her clothing stores and invited her to important events until Yolanda decided to take her life.

Why Yolanda Saldívar Murdered Selena?

The motive of why Yolanda killed Selena is still a mystery. There is a theory that assures that the then 35-year-old woman shot the singer in a fit of rage. Selena would have discovered financial mismanagement by her fan in business and summoned her to a motel to fire her. The news didn’t sit well with her and ended up killing her.

But Yolanda’s version, which nobody believed, is different. The woman told journalist Maria Celeste that the crime was committed by mistake due to a secret they shared.

“In the first place, I did not take out the gun. We argued, and I told her to leave. She was crying deeply telling me that she loved me very much and that I could not do that to her to leave her like that. Then I told her, ‘I’m never going to reveal the secret.’ The gun was on top of the bed; I grabbed the gun and told her: I am not leaving you for anyone else. I put the gun to my temple and told her: I want you to leave, my child; go away. She did not want to leave. At that moment, the door was open. She was going to the door and said to me: ‘let’s close the door, let’s talk. As she was going to the door, I said to her: don’t close the door. When I told her that, I missed the shot,” she said.

Yolanda saldivar, selena quintanilla's murderer

Straight to Prison…

During the so-called ‘trial of the century,’ the jury found Yolanda guilty of the murder of the interpreter of ‘Como la flor’ and sentenced her to life imprisonment. She has been serving this sentence since November 1995 at the Mountain View Unit women’s prison in Gatesville, Texas.

In that place, she is isolated from all the inmates, since she received several death threats after murdering one of the most beloved singers in the world. No matter what, Yolanda has assured time and again that she does not regret what happened, arguing that it was all an accident. During her time behind bars, the woman studied criminal justice to defend her case in court.

When Will Yolanda Saldivar Be Released from Prison?

In the last few days, news has spread that Yolanda has the possibility of getting out of prison despite having been sentenced to life imprisonment for the murder of Selena Quintanilla. The woman has tried on several occasions, unsuccessfully, to appeal her sentence. 2015 was the last one, highlighting health problems.

In 2025, Yolanda’s life could change, as she would become a candidate to finish her sentence on parole, although the truth is that it is uncertain. For now, we can only wait two years to know the future of Selena Quintanilla’s murderer.

Story written in Spanish by Nayeli Párraga in Cultura Colectiva