Closing Arguments Begin Today In Sierra Lamar Murder Trial
(BANT) – Closing arguments begin this morning in the trial of Antolin Garcia-Torres, the 26-year-old man who Santa Clara County prosecutors allege murdered 15-year-old Sierra LaMar in 2012.
The trial is wrapping up after almost three months of witness testimony, including discussion of the physical evidence key to the no-body case, including DNA found in Garcia-Torres’ car and on her clothes, which were recovered in a field near her house outside Morgan Hill.
If convicted, the jury could impose the death penalty on Garcia-Torres, who has two children and has been in custody since May 21, 2012.
Garcia-Torres, who has not spoken throughout the trial, confirmed with Santa Clara County Superior Court Judge Vanessa Zecher Monday that he would not be testifying.
Prosecutor David Boyd and defense attorney Al Lopez both called Santa Clara County sheriff’s Detective Doug Kubik, a digital evidence forensic examiner who investigated Sierra’s disappearance, as the final witness in the case Monday.
In the days after Sierra disappeared, Kubik logged into Sierra’s Gmail and Yahoo email accounts and social media profiles and investigated her final actions on her MacBook, including browsing on Tumblr and Twitter and snapping selfies in Photo Booth, on March 16, 2012.
Kubik found digital evidence that Sierra tweeted for the last time at 6:29 a.m., logged into Tumblr on her MacBook at 6:45 a.m. and last used her computer to take selfies at 7:12 a.m. She missed her school bus that morning and did not show up for school that day.
On Jan. 30, prosecutors showed the jury surveillance footage of Garcia-Torres’ distinctive 1998 red Volkswagen Jetta leaving the Maple Leaf RV Park where he lived 8 miles south of Sierra’s bus stop at 7 a.m. the day she went missing.
Garcia-Torres has previously testified that he left to visit a Bank of America branch and then buy gas at the Valero station 3 miles north of his RV park on Monterey Road.
Closing arguments are scheduled for 9 a.m.