NM jury convicts man of first-degree murder

Posted at: 05/10/2013 7:45 PM
By: The Associated Press

LAS CRUCES, N.M. (AP) - Dona Ana County prosecutors say a man facing a first-degree murder charge in connection with a 2011 shooting has been found guilty.
Eric Marquez was accused of shooting Julian "J.T." Melendres with a 12-gauge shotgun outside a convenience store along U.S. 70. Melendres died at the scene.
Police say Marquez believed Melendres, a self-proclaimed gang member, had previously shot at his home and confronted him after he was seen driving by his house in a suspicious way.
District Attorney Mark D'Antonio says Melendres' family can have some closure with Friday's verdict.
Marquez's attorney had argued that the shooting was an act of self-defense.
Sentencing for Marquez has yet to be scheduled. He faces life in prison, which in New Mexico means 30 years before being eligible for parole.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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