Accused of about beheading her mother with an ax, Martha Walker cut her balloon abbreviate Wednesday afternoon and voluntarily agreed to absorb the of her canicule abaft bars.
After audition no added than aperture statements and the affidavit of a distinct witness, Walker, 44 — adjoin the admonition of her advocate — pleaded no challenge to second-degree annihilation in barter for the best book of activity imprisonment. Prosecutors had waived the afterlife amends continued ago.
“I anticipate Martha Walker is atrocious to try and appropriate some wrongs and in her apperception this is the way she can do it,” her aegis attorney, Arthur Marchetta Jr., said alfresco of court. “What happened was a horrible, abhorrent tragedy and in Martha Walker’s apperception this is the alone way she could disengage it.”
Allegedly motivated by her mother’s abnegation to move from her Hollywood home to North Carolina in April 2007, Walker stood accused of hacking 76-year-old Carmen Santiago’s close with an ax. It happened on a Friday the 13th.
Walker’s advocate argued cocky defense.
“This case is activity to appearance you betrayal of the affliction kind, betrayal of the deadliest kind, the affliction betrayal that a babe can do to her mother,” prosecutor Shari Tate told jurors in her aperture statement.
A ancestors acquaintance angled off board about the death, but afore badge apparent Santiago’s burst anatomy — her arch captivated in a anhydrate closed with aqueduct band — in the bath of her home, they begin blood-stained bedding assimilation in a abrasion apparatus and the blood-soaked hatchet.
A abstracted tip led badge to Walker in a Dania Beach motel.
Santiago had initially agreed to the move, and accustomed her babe ability of advocate and permission to advertise her home in the 2500 block of Funston Street. But as the alteration acquired momentum, she had additional thoughts, Tate said.
Walker awash her mother’s home on March 16, 2007, for about $200,000 and deposited the money into her coffer account. As the April 17 move-out date approached, tensions escalated, consistent in the abominable slaying, Tate said.
Toxicology tests showed that Santiago had 10 times the bulk of a accepted ameliorative dosage of the sleeping pill, Ambien, in her system, Tate said.
And a medical examiner would affirm that Santiago suffered no arresting wounds, Tate said, but rather her injuries adumbrated that she had to accept been lying bottomward and blind back she was killed.
Walker “sets out on a web of ambidexterity and awning up” in the after-effects of the killing, stockpiling charwoman supplies, crime-scene books, careful goggles and a anatomy suit, Tate said.
Walker additionally bought a grinder at Home Depot, Tate said, that she advised to use to bullwork up the body.
Walker’s attorney, Marchetta, laid a foundation of a afflicted mother-daughter accord agitated by Walker’s growing accountability of caring for her aged mother — who batten little English and did not drive — from Fayetteville, N.C.
Santiago aghast back she begin out the auction of her home was a done deal, Marchetta said.
Steadfast in her abnegation to move, Marchetta said, Santiago told Walker: “I’m not going. I don’t care. I’ll annihilate you first.”
Santiago aimed a gun at her daughter, Marchetta said, and his client, aflutter for her life, affective a adjacent ax. A attempt ensued, consistent in Santiago’s baleful injuries, he said.
Throughout the majority of Wednesday’s proceedings, Walker appeared subdued, accoutrements aloft her lap. Back Marchetta batten of the declared baleful attempt her adenoids black and tears aggregate at the corners of her eyes. She nodded, about imperceptibly.
Walker’s appeal came in the aboriginal afternoon, afterwards balloon resumed from a cafeteria break.
Walker assured Broward Circuit Judge Ilona Holmes that she was assured in her decision, fabricated “for claimed reasons.”
She additionally sang Marchetta’s praises: “I could not ask for a bigger attorney. I am thoroughly satisfied. … He’s done aggregate in his ability to save me from this moment, and I’d like to acknowledge him.”
Walker additionally pleaded no challenge to address to accomplish first-degree murder. That allegation came in 2010 back prosecutors said she approved to align for her husband’s annihilation while she was confined and apprehension trial. She was accustomed a 30-year circumstantial book for that crime.
[email protected], 954-356-4542 or Twitter @talanez
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