Former Fort Bliss soldier on trial for the murder of his roomate

El Paso News

The murder trial of former Fort Bliss soldier Joe Cabral began Tuesday in El Paso. Cabral is accused of shooting his roommate, 21-year old Private First Class Zachary McGuire, in Feburary of 2018. 

Cabral is facing one count of murder for the killing of McGuire after the two got into an argument while moving in together at Dos Santos Apartments. If convicted, Cabral faces up to 99 years in prison. 

On day two of the trial, prosecutors called Dos Santos Apartments property manager Sonia Martinez to the stand. Martinez testified that McGuire and Cabral, “looked like they were together.” When asked what she meant by together, she said, “like a couple.”

Later, the defense released that invesigators found a journal in McGuire’s room containing entries of hate toward LGBTQ and minority groups. 

According to the defense, the journal entries were directed towards the defendant and said, “I want to stab him in the eye…stab stab stab,” and, “I want to stab him in the throat.”

However, Judge J. Steve Ables excluded the journal from being used in the trial, due to a lack of evidence of the victim’s state of mind during the argument. 

Crime Scene Unit investigator Officer Granillo testified that evidence at the scene was consistent with the victim being shot while he was on the ground, suggesting that McGuire was pinned down when he was shot and not standing. 

The trial is in recess and will resume Thursday morning at 9 A.M. 

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