SAN ANGELO - After close to ten hours of deliberations a Tom Green County jury sentenced 27-year-old Isidro Delacruz to the death penalty on Tuesday, April 17, according to the Concho Valley Homepage.
SAN ANGELO - After close to ten hours of deliberations a Tom Green County jury sentenced 27-year-old Isidro Delacruz to the death penalty on Tuesday, April 17, according to the San Angelo Standard-Times
The jury of eight women and four men went into deliberation at 10:30 a.m. Tuesday to answer the special issues questions that resulted in the death penalty on the fifth week of trial.
Delacruz was sentenced by 119th District Judge Ben Woodward who read the sentence in the courtroom.
The same jury convicted Delacruz of capital murder on March 29th, 2018.
According to a news release from the District Attorney Allison Palmer, Delacruz was convicted after being found guilty of slashing the child's throat.
“In the span of about an hour on the morning of September 2, 2014 — 5-year-old Naiya Villegas' life was taken away,” Palmer wrote in the release.
At the time of the murder, Delacruz had been in an on and off relationship with Naiya’s mother, Tanya Bermea. In November of 2013, Delacruz had been arrested for beating and choking Tanya to the point of unconsciousness. At that time, Delacruz had been on felony probation for criminal mischief, shooting out the windows of numerous downtown businesses, since 2009. Over the course of his probation, Delacruz committed numerous violations of probation. Warrants were issued for Delacruz’ arrest for a motion to revoke his probation and for the strangulation offense in December 2013. Delacruz was arrested in July of 2014 for the warrants and was released August 27, 2014, after being ordered by a court to have no contact with Bermea. Five days after that order, Delacruz murdered Naiya Villegas in her bed after assaulting Bermea and her mother and locking them out of Bermea’s home.
And more than three years later a jury in the capital murder trial related to her death returned a punishment of death for Delacruz.
From March 19 until April 17, those 14 citizens listened intently to witnesses and reviewed exhibits. They paid close attention to the evidence, the attorneys’ arguments, and the Court’s instructions.
“They worked diligently and conscientiously,” Palmer wrote in a statement.
Palmer said picking the jury was very difficult because prospective jurors did not want to serve however said they would because of their duty as a citizen.
“I am humbled by this sense of civic duty and community,” Palmer wrote. “I thank all of the venirepersons who took time for jury selection and I thank the 14 who so diligently served on this jury. They have my deepest respect.”
She continued by reaching out to the family.
“To the family of Naiya Villegas, you have my deepest sympathies,” Palmer wrote. “No family should have to endure the loss of a child, especially in these circumstances, at the hands of one who professed to love her. In the ultimate betrayal, Naiya’s short life was brutally, maliciously ended.
“I hope this resolution brings them some measure of closure, and that they will remember the beauty of Naiya and know that she has found justice,” she said.