A Texas man has been indicted on charges of beating two homeless people to death with a sledgehammer in attacks one month apart.
Adelaido Esparza, 57, was allegedly caught on surveillance video repeatedly bashing a 50-year-old homeless man in the head with a heavy object the night of Oct. 20, according to an arrest affidavit obtained by The Dallas Morning News. Exactly one month later, on Nov. 20, footage captured an individual doing the same thing, this time to a 60-year-old homeless man who was sleeping under a blanket.
Footage showed the suspect placing his weapon, a heavy sledgehammer with a duct tape-wrapped handle, inside his SUV before driving off, KRLD, a local radio station, reports.
Both victims, later identified as Fredrick Billmeier Jr. and Daniel Slusser, suffered severe head injuries and were pronounced dead on scene when discovered by police, according to the affidavit.
Shortly after the Nov. 20 incident, officers patrolling near the crime scene spotted what appeared to be a sledgehammer inside an SUV similar to the one caught on video, according to the affidavit. A few days later, police surveilling Esparza’s house saw him perform an illegal lane change and pulled him over. They discovered that his driver’s license was expired and had had no insurance – and a blood-caked sledgehammer was allegedly lying in the back of his car.
Esparza was arrested and initially charged only with the murder of Slusser, the man killed on Nov. 20. A few weeks later, Esparza was charged with killing Billmeier as well, according to court documents obtained by Oxygen.com.
The day after Billmeier’s death, another homeless man, 51-year-old Paul Parker, was also discovered dead from head injuries, according to the Dallas Morning News. However, a police spokesperson warned the newspaper against drawing conclusions about the killer without further evidence.
Esparza was indicted on two counts of murder on Dec. 29, according to court documents obtained by Oxygen.com. His next court date is set for this Thursday.
He is being held on $1 million bond, according to court documents.
Esparza’s attorney, Hugo Aguilar, declined Oxygen.com’s emailed request for comment on this story.
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