The El Paso County District Attorney’s Office offered Daniel Villegas a plea deal hours before he was set to go to trail, for a third time, for a 1993 double murder.
The deal offered Monday morning would have been an “Alford Plea.” That means Villegas would still maintain he’s innocent, but would plead guilty and get time served, his lawyer Joe Spencer said.
Villegas turned it down.
Spencer said the District Attorney offered the same plea deal a few months ago and Villegas also turned it down.
Villegas’s trial began Monday with jury selection. Opening statements are set to begin on Tuesday.
He is accused of shooting and killing two teens, Armando “Mando” Lazo and Bobby England in 1993. Villegas was tried twice in 1994 and 1995. The first trial ended with a hung jury and the second ended in a conviction.
Since 2009 Villegas has been fighting legal battles, claiming that his 1993 confession was coerced. In 2013, the conviction was overturned but he remained the lead suspect.
He has been out of jail on bond since 2014.