A jury on Wednesday found a Los Angeles
man accused of torturing his girlfriend's 8-year-old son guilty of
According to The
Los Angeles Times, jurors deliberated six hours before
returning the verdict against Isauro Aguirre.
Aguirre and his girlfriend Pearl
Fernandez, who also faces trial, pleaded not guilty to charges of
capital murder and a special circumstance of torture. A Los Angeles
County District Attorney's Office prosecutor told jurors that Aguirre
hated Gabriel Fernandez because he suspected he was gay.
On May 22, 2013, Pearl Fernandez called
911 to report that Gabriel was not breathing. Authorities found the
boy naked in a bedroom, his skull cracked, three ribs broken and BB
pellets embedded in his lung and groin. He died from his injuries
two days later in a hospital.
Prosecutor Jon Hatami said that text
messages between Aguirre and the boy's mother prove that they
conspired to torture and kill Gabriel. He also claimed that the
couple called 911 in an attempt to mislead authorities.
“They called 911 to cover up what
they did,” Hatami said.
Defense attorney John Allan said that
his client “never intended for Gabriel to die” and argued that he
was guilty of second-degree, not first-degree, murder.
The trial's penalty phase begins