Mia Katherine Zapata (August 25, 1965 – July 7, 1993) was the lead singer for the Seattle punk band The Gits.
In the fall of 1986, she helped co-found The Gits while attending Antioch College, a liberal arts college located in Yellow Springs, Ohio. In 1989, Zapata, along with the rest of The Gits, relocated to Seattle. The band released a series of well-received singles on local indie labels from 1990 to 1991. In 1992, the band released its debut album Frenching the Bully, and received good reviews. Their reputation progressively increased before the band entered the studio in 1993 to begin work on their second album Enter: The Conquering Chicken.
On the morning of July 7, 1993, around 2:00 a.m., Zapata left the Comet Tavern bar in the Capitol Hill area of Seattle, and this was the last she was seen alive. She may have walked a few blocks West to get a cab, North to a friend's apartment, or decided to walk home.
She was raped and murdered in the Central District. It is believed she encountered her murderer shortly after 2:15 am. Since an employee at the bar remembered her wearing her headset as she left, it is believed she was listening to music from her walkman and thus was unaware of the approaching danger.
According to the cable television show Unsolved Mysteries, a man two blocks from the Comet Tavern heard a scream around 3 am. A woman found her body in the street at around 3:30 am near the intersection of 24th and Yesler in the Central District neighborhood. Her body was in a Christ-like position (arms stretched out, perpendicular to her body) which gave rise to the belief that it was cult killing. According to the medical examiner, if she had not been strangled she would have died from the internal injuries suffered from the beating.
Mia Zapata is interred at Cave Hill Cemetery in Louisville, Kentucky.