Trial begins for Merced County man accused of brutal homicide
MERCED COUNTY, Calif. (KFSN) -- Disturbing new evidence emerged in the murder trial of a Merced County man accused of burning a woman to death.
Prosecutors say Luis Valencia and three other men who are being tried separately -- killed Rosa Avina in October of 2007. Avina was found badly burned and barely alive in a Ballico field.
In court, the prosecution played an audiotape of Merced County detectives interviewing Avina in the ambulance before she was flown to a hospital where she died days later. On the tape, Avina groans in pain but still manages to answer a critical question.
"Can you tell me who you were with?"
Alvaro is the name of another suspect in the case. Attorneys for both sides declined to comment, but a family friend of the victim told Action News Avina did not deserve to die the way she did.
merced county, murder, crimetracker, court, local, sara sandrik
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