Armando Perez admitted to fatally stabbing his estranged wife, Diana Gonzalez, in a restroom in San Diego. According to Time, he thanked the jury at his trial.
Perez was convicted of first-degree murder and a special-circumstance allegation of lying in wait. He potentially faces life in prison.
Perez had showed up to his 19-year-old wife's college class in October of 2010. Her parents, fearing her husband's violence, had come to pick her up from the City College. A confrontation between Gozales and Perez ensued, during which the former slashed the latter in the face, chest, neck, and genitals. He continued to mutilate her body after she died.
Perez claimed he was driven to murder after seeing Gozales kissing another man outside of class.
“It was me but I just became a monster. I don’t know what happened,” Perez said from the stand.
According to The San Diego Union Tribune, Gonazels had filed a restraining order against Perez before she was murdered. The Distract Attorney's office did not file a case against Perez. They claimed there was insufficient evidence to prove any charges.
Perez attempted to plead guilty but the conviction was overturned, as criminals facing life in prison are not allowed to represent themselves. Perez was later found guilty in a second trial after enlisting an attorney.
"It was a very gruesome murder and hopefully now Diana can rest in peace," said Deputy District Attorney Jessica Lees.
“I know it wasn’t easy,” said Judge Frederic Link. “It never is. … These cases are tough.”
[Photo: San Diego Sheriff's Department]
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