Convicted Child Killer Delacruz Could be Sentenced to Death Today
SAN ANGELO, TX -- Defense attorneys for convicted capital murderer Isidro Delacruz are expected to rest their case today in the punishment phase of his trial.
After the defense rests, the judge will read the instructions to the jury and attorneys will present their closing arguments. Once closing arguments are finished, the jury will be given the charge and begin deliberations.
Delacruz was convicted of capital murder which carries a range of punishment of life in prison without parole or death by lethal injection. It took the same jury only three hours to convict Delacruz of capital murder on March 29.
Delacruz was convicted of breaking into Tanya Bermea’s house on Houston St. in the early morning hours of Sept. 2, 2014 and cutting the throat of Bermea’s 5-year-old daughter Naiya Villegas. Bermea and Delacruz had a volatile dating relationship and he had just been released from jail five days earlier for assaulting Bermea at the same house.
Testimony and police reports show that Delacruz chased Bermea out of the house, threw her to the ground, beat her and choked her until she was unconscious a year before Naiya was killed.
In a video interview with police the day Naiya was murdered, Delacruz admitted that he had been drinking all night and had gone to Bermea’s house and hit her. He also told police he threw his knife at her. The knife found across the street at the scene had Naiya’s blood and Delacruz’s blood on it.
Blood alcohol expert Dr. Wilke Wilson testified Friday that Delacruz’s blood alcohol level at the time of the murder was three times the legal limit. Wilson said Delacruz told him in an interview that he had consumed 21 beers that night and Wilson testified that would be consistent with his blood alcohol level.
District Attorney Allison Palmer who is prosecuting the case introduced hundreds of photographs over the four weeks of the trial. Those photos showed the bloody inside of Bermea’s house. There was blood in every room. There were also photos of the deceased five year old girl in the hospital and at her autopsy. Those photos were so disturbing that many jurors and others in the courtroom gasped and looked away.
Palmer's case also included Delacruz's history of violence and arrests before the murder and his numerous violations of jail conduct after the murder including being caught with makeshift knives in his jail cell and evidence of an escape route in his cell block.
The final phase of the capital murder trial begins at 9 a.m. Monday in the Tom Green County courthouse.