POSTED: Monday, March 7, 2011 - 7:20am
UPDATED: Wednesday, February 22, 2012 - 12:01am
EL PASO - The retrial for an El Paso man accused of killing his mother and dumping her body in the desert is set to begin this morning in San Antonio.
Gloria Marmolejo was days away from celebrating her 55th birthday when she disappeared in July of 2009. Panic instantly set in with her family. Posters were put up in hopes she would be found safe, but just days after going missing Gloria's body was found.
We would later find out the church-going and life-loving grandmother was strangled to death and discarded like a piece of trash in the Santa Teresa desert.
For a month family members were left wondering who would kill their loved one. That's when the case took a disturbing twist. Police named Gloria's son, David Marmolejo, as the prime suspect in her murder.
"Our investigators spoke to him early on in the investigation and he gave information early on where he was and he gave information that was inaccurate. We have evidence to show that his version of where he was is inaccurate," Officer Chris Mears told News Channel 9 in a 2009 interview.
From the start David Marmolejo has maintained his innocence, and last October a jury El Paso came within one vote of acquitting him. During the trial several pieces of evidence were shown to the jury, but experts could not find a solid DNA link to Marmolejo. It appears the prosecution may have been relying on cell phone records and testimony from the state's key witness Mariah Wilson, David's stepsister and lover. In the end it wasn't enough for the jury to reach a verdict.
Since then, a judge moved Marmolejo's re-trial to San Antonio, a city where potential jurors might be less biased about the case. Although the prosecution might still have a hard time convicting him in the retrial because a judge isn't allowing Mariah Wilson's testimony. An attorney for Marmelojo argues the prosecution still has the upper hand because they now know Marmolejo's defense.
Marmolejo's retrial is set to begin this morning. We have a crew in San Antonio to cover the proceedings.
Look for updates on ktsm.com and on NewsChannel 9 at 5 and 6 o'clock.