After sitting late into the night a jury has found a man guilty of murdering his wife with a dumbbell in Orihuela, and then raping her before fleeing to Murcia, where he stayed several days untilhe eventually broke down and confessed the crime to his sister-in-law.
The verdict was eventually announced in the Elche Provincial Court late on Monday night, after the jury concluded its deliberation, following several hours of being locked in a room, and after six days of judicial proceedings
It was not until 00.30 hours when the ruling was announced. The reason given for the delay was that the Civil Guard had returned the prisoner to his cell in Fontcalent by mistake despite being initially instructed that he should stay in the Elche court until the jury’s decision was published. He didn’t arrive back at the ilicitanos court room until after 11pm.
The prisoner confessed to the crime during the first session of the trial, last Tuesday, although he claimed that he had killed his partner whilst suffering from a mental disorder derived from drug use. Using his testimony the defence were calling for him to be found innocent of the charge of murder.
Meanwhile, the prosecution requested that he serve a jail sentence of 37 years, stating that he was in possession of all of his mental faculties when he committed the crime, and was fully aware of what he was doing at all times.
However they did subsequently reduce their request to 27 years in prison for both the murder and rape, accepting the mitigating circumstances in that he suffered from a personality disorder due to drug addiction.
After he had killed his wife the man fled by taxi to Murcia where he took refuge in a boarding house. He had with him with 2,400 euros.
He stayed at the house until his sister called him on the phone asking if she could go round to visit her sister in law at their Orihuela home.
He warned her not to go because she was not going to like what she would find. After that call, the woman called the emergency services, and the Local Police of Orihuela found the body of the dead woman, lying on the bed.
According to the Prosecutor’s Office, the murder was committed in the early hours of 2nd August. The couple had argued during the early part of the evening. Later, taking advantage of the fact that she was sleeping, he took a dumbbell and struck her eleven times on the head until he was convinced that she was dead following which he raped her before fleeing to Murcia.
The defendant was arrested five days later by the National Police.
Now that the verdict has been issued, the judge from the Seventh Section of the Provincial Court of Alicante, based in Elche, who had occasion to reprimand the prisoner for his arrogant attitude in the courtroom, will decide the sentence, which, according to judicial sources, will range from 19 to 28 years in prison.