JammedUp News

News

Fla. Supreme Court grants new trial for undocumented Honduran national on death row

October 28, 2016  |  Posted by: JammedUp Staff
Fla. Supreme Court grants new trial for undocumented Honduran national on death row

Are you in a legal jam? Find a Lawyer, Bail Bondsman or Private Investigator on JammedUp.

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Honduran national, Clemente Aguirre-Jarquin, who is on death row for a double murder in central Florida was granted a retrial by the state Supreme Court on Thursday based on new evidence, including comments a woman made to a friend and neighbors that she was the killer.

The Florida Supreme Court also pointed to DNA evidence tested after the trial that showed Samantha Williams’ blood was at the scene where her mother and grandmother were stabbed to death in June 2004 in Seminole County.

Justices ordered a new trial for Clemente Aguirre-Jarquin, who authorities have said had overwhelming evidence against him, including blood-soaked clothes, his bloody footprints at the scene and a tie to the murder weapon. Aguirre told investigators he came across the bodies when he entered the victims’ trailer looking for a beer, but didn’t call police because he was in the country illegally and didn’t want to be deported. None of the blood found at the scene was Aguirre’s. He was convicted in 2006.

“Newly discovered evidence is not limited to Samantha’s blood at the crime scene,” the court wrote in its unanimous decision. “Samantha has confessed — on five different occasions to four different people — that she killed the victims.”

One was a friend who said Williams told her twice in 2010 that demons in her head made her do it, according to court documents. In another instance, a neighbor testified that Williams told him, “I’m crazy, I’m evil, and I killed my grandmother and my mother” after he told her to stop drinking liquor straight from the bottle at a barbecue. Two other neighbors said she made similar comments during arguments with Williams.

“There’s overwhelming evidence that someone else committed the crime and there’s a whole host of evidence showing that Mr. Aguirre couldn’t have committed the crime,” said Aguirre’s attorney, Lindsey Boney.

State Attorney Phil Archer wouldn’t comment on the ruling.

Seminole County Sheriff Donald Eslinger wasn’t available for comment. A telephone number for Williams was disconnected and she couldn’t be reached for comment, but at a previous court hearing she denied killing her mother, 47-year-old Cheryl Williams, and 68-year-old grandmother Carol Bareis. She has never been charged in the case.

Clothes soaked in the victims’ blood were found in a bag in Aguirre’s trailer where he lived next door. The knife used to kill the women was found between the two homes and it matched a knife missing from a restaurant where Aguirre worked. He told investigators he went into Williams’ trailer to get some beer, found Cheryl Williams’ body and picked her up to try to revive her. She had had been stabbed 127 times. Bareis had been stabbed twice.

Clemente Aguirre-Jarquin, now 36, said he picked up the knife in the trailer thinking the killer might still be inside, then later tossed it outside between the trailers. Samantha Williams said she spent the night at a boyfriend’s. The boyfriend discovered the bodies when he went to the trailer the next morning to pick up Williams’ work clothes and called 911. He later testified that while Williams was at his house, he was “dead to the world” — asleep most of the night.

Get the latest news from the world of crime