The family of the Texas firefighter who was found dead in a bathroom window at a Cancun resort have shared photos of the 35-year-old’s body that show heavy bruising and cuts they believe resulted from an attack.
Photos the family also shared of the day before, July 18, soon after Elijah Snow and his wife Jamie arrived in Cancun to celebrate their tenth wedding anniversary, show him with no bruising, only tattoos on his body.
Family members are convinced the father-of-two was a victim of foul play and are now calling on the FBI to investigate, after Mexican officials said he died of asphyxiation overnight on July 19 while trying to climb through a tiny bathroom window at the Sunset Royal Beach Resort.
‘There’s one thing I know for certain, this was not an accident,’ Snow’s widow Jamie Snow told DailyMail.com, furious after the general manager of the resort dismissed the death as nothing more than a tragic mishap involving a drunken tourist.
WARNING: GRAPHIC CONTENT
Elijah Snow and his wife Jamie arrived in Cancun to celebrate their tenth wedding anniversary on July 18. On the morning of July 19 he was found dead, wedged in the tiny bathroom window of a neighboring hotel employee bathroom
Photos the family also shared of the day before, soon after Elijah Snow and his wife Jamie arrived in Cancun, show him with no bruising, only tattoos on his body
The deceased firefighter’s stepfather, David Oujesky, shared photos he took of Snow’s body at a Cancun funeral home, showing bruising on Snow’s legs, back, and forehead.
‘You don’t get that kind of bruising by climbing into a window,’ Oujesky, a retired firefighter and trained EMT in Texas, told DailyMail.com Thursday.
‘I think he was beaten to death and that they tried to hide the body, dragged him back there and stuffed him into the hole.’
‘We don’t agree with Mexico’s narrative that this was an accident,’ he said. ‘Our main goal now is to put pressure on Mexico to let the FBI come in because we don’t trust them.’
Oujesky gave a detailed rundown of events leading up to the death right up through the moment Jamie left her husband to go to bed, and the aftermath after Jamie reported him missing.
He said the couple woke up at 3am on Sunday, July 18 to catch an early flight to Cancun and arrived there mid-morning and checked into the Royalton Chic Suites Cancun, an all-inclusive, luxury beachfront resort in Cancun’s hotel zone.
They spent the day at the pool, went back to their room to clean up, then went out for dinner at an on-site Asian restaurant, before heading downstairs to a first-floor bar.
Snow’s stepfather David Oujesky told DailyMail.com it makes no sense that his stepson, an extremely fit, 175-pound, 5’9′ professional firefighter, would somehow accidentally wedge himself into such a tight space
The family shared his post mortem photos, showing injuries they believe he sustained during an attack on July 19
Photos provided to DailyMail.com reveal heavy bruises and cuts to 35-year-old’s body and head
The Texas firefighter is said to have died of asphyxiation after becoming trapped while trying to climb through the bathroom window of a Cancun resort next door to the hotel where he was staying with his wife. Pictured: A large bruise on Snow’s inner left thigh
Snow’s outer right thigh. Mexican officials said Snow died of mechanical asphyxia due to thoracic-abdominal compression but his family members are convinced he was a victim of foul play
His stepfather, David Oujesky told DailyMail.com the heavy bruising is not consistent with injuries one would get from ‘climbing into a window’
The family is now calling on the FBI to investigate Snow’s mysterious death. Pictured: A large dark bruise on his right leg
The family said they also can’t imagine Snow would sneak into a neighboring hotel, locate a bathroom in a dark, secluded area and decide to climb through the tiny window
They had a minor argument, and she went back to their room between 9:30 and 10pm.
They’d both consumed alcohol and he was inebriated, having consumed several margaritas that day, a bottle of sake with dinner, and ordering a dirty martini at the bar, when she called it a night.
‘Jamie grew tired, and he said I’ll stay down here and have another cocktail,’ Oujesky said.
All the bars closed at 11pm under Covid rules.
Snow wound up next door at the Sunset Resort, where a gardener arriving at work at 7am discovered Snow’s body protruding from a tiny window of a locked employee bathroom, behind the stage of an outdoor theater where guests had earlier gathered for a show.
He was left dangling from the window just two feet off the ground, in an area not visible to guests or surveillance cameras.
His wife woke up at 4am and noticed her husband still hadn’t returned. She walked around the hotel and didn’t see him.
She then posted a message on a private Facebook page she’d joined for hotel guests, and alerted Royalton security.
Snow, an eight-year veteran of the Arlington Fire Department, had been celebrating his 10th wedding anniversary with his wife
His stepfather said he believes Snow was beaten to death and that the perpetrators then tried to hide the body by stuffing him into the hole
It is unclear how Snow ended up stuck in the window of the Sunset Royal Beach Resort’s employee bathroom – which is located behind the hotel’s theater and not visible to guests
This is the outdoor theater of the Sunset Royal resort where guests had gathered for a live show the night of Snow’s death
‘They did a little search on the grounds,’ the stepfather said. ‘That’s when Jamie called police, at 8:30am.’
She met up with officers at the police station two hours later and was told at 11:30am that her husband was found dead.
‘When Jamie ID’d him that morning, they wouldn’t show her the body, only pictures on the computer screen,’ Oujesky said. ‘She had to beg them to let her take pictures.’
Oujesky flew into Cancun on Wednesday, when they were finally allowed to see the body at a local funeral home.
‘There was a lot of bruising on him that we didn’t believe was consistent with him trying to climb through that window,’ he said.
He said Jamie decided to have the body cremated, saying that’s what her husband had wanted.
They discussed transporting the body back to Texas for an independent autopsy. But authorities said that would delay the release another week.
‘We were trying to get out of Mexico,’ Oujesky noted, though he now is second-guessing that decision.
Back at the Royalton, the family pleaded with staff to share video surveillance footage that they hoped would show the Elijah Snow’s movements that night. But the hotel refused and refused to connect them with the Sunset for its surveillance.
Sunset Royal Beach general manager David Barcenas said the tragedy could have happened any time after 10:30pm that Sunday – which is one hour after the theater performance ended and the time resort bars are required to shut under the Covid curfew
Views of the Sunset Royal Resort (left) and Royalton Chic Suites (right) Cancun where Elijah Snow was staying with his wife
General views of one of the beach accesses at the Sunset Royal Cancun resort (white building). Elijah Snow was staying next door at the Royalton Chic with his wife for their 10 year anniversary
‘We’re hoping some kind of video cameras can show us. Did he leave with somebody?
‘Just one video of him walking off by himself to that area, or walking off with someone else, will tell us a lot,’ the stepfather said.
Mexican authorities gave the family his wallet, his driver’s license, fire department ID, and concealed handgun license, but they have yet to return a rubber wedding band he wears when he’s traveling and the clothes he was wearing.
According to Jamie, Elijah was carrying $100 and the money was missing when police returned his wallet, which still contained his credit cards, the stepdad said.
While the case remains open, Mexican authorities insist that there are no signs of foul play, stating Snow became trapped as he tried to enter the window and could not place his feet on the ground, giving him no support point to release himself from the window.
The Quintana Roo State Attorney General’s Office said in a statement that Snow died of mechanical asphyxia due to thoracic-abdominal compression.
In an exclusive interview with the DailyMail.com, David Barcenas, general manager of the Sunset Royal Beach Club, said he believes there was no crime and that the 35-year-old’s death was nothing more than a freak accident involving a drunk man who snuck onto the property from a neighboring resort.
Snow (pictured left with his wife Jamie and two kids) was found dead in Cancun, Mexico last Monday, hours after celebrating his 10th wedding anniversary with his wife
‘That’s the big question – how did he get there?’ Barcenas told DailyMail.com in his first and only interview since last week’s mysterious death.
‘We don’t know how he arrived there. I think he was walking in from the beach. We think he was drunk. I don’t know if he was climbing in, went backwards? We have the same questions everyone has.’
Oujesky said it makes no sense that his stepson, an extremely fit, 175-pound, 5’9′ professional firefighter would somehow accidentally wedge himself into such a tight space.
‘My son’s a CrossFit guy,’ he said. ‘He was in outstanding shape. There was not an ounce of fat on him.
‘His shoulders aren’t even going to go through that space. He was left hung up at his armpits.’
He also can’t imagine Snow would sneak into a neighboring hotel, locate a bathroom in a dark, secluded area and decide to climb through the tiny window.
He didn’t even have a flashlight, having left his iPhone back in the room.
‘If my son had to pee, he’s going to turn around and pee,’ the stepdad said. ‘He’s not going to try to break into somewhere to pee.’
Snow and his wife were staying at the Royalton Chic Suites Cancun (above) a $392-a-night all-inclusive resort, another guest who was staying there at the time confirmed to DailyMail.com. The Sunset Royal is seen next door (far left)
He believes his son, after stepping out of the Royalton onto the beach, got mugged, beaten to death and dumped.
‘Did he just take on a walk on the beach and two guys confronted him?’ he asked. ‘Maybe then didn’t mean to kill him but they did.
‘We think he was trying to run. I don’t know if they meant to kill him, but they did,’ he said.
‘Maybe they were going to drag him in there and see if they could throw him in bushes, saw there’s no place to hide him and decided, let’s stuff him in the hole.’
The family retained a local lawyer to help them get answers. The lawyer, early on, obtained some crime scene photos and documents through his contacts.
Oujesky said he’s spoken with an FBI agent working in Mexico and shared the information.
‘He’s sitting on the sidelines now, saying there’s not a lot we can do right now unless we get invited in,’ he said.