Alleged Lehigh killer denied bond

May 24th, 2010 by admin

Manuel DeJesus Rosales must now wait to see whether prosecutors believe they can prove he killed his 3-month-old grandson and whether the alleged act warrants the ultimate penalty.

But Rosales, 43, will spend his time waiting in the Lee County Jail after a judge today decided to hold him without bond — the second time he appeared in court in two days.

“I am concerned that he is a flight risk and a danger to the community,” said Lee County Judge Leigh Frizzell Hayes. “And I will hold him no bond.”

Appearing via closed circuit television from the Lee County Jail’s Core facility, Rosales appeared to be wearing a padded anti-suicide suit and was surrounded by three guards. He said “good morning” to the judge when he picked up the telephone in the jail to communicate with Frizzell, who was in the Lee County Justice Center. That was all he said.

He was arrested Thursday by Lee County sheriff’s deputies after they were called to a duplex on Gilbert Avenue South in Lehigh Acres. There, they found his 20-year-old daughter Karminda Rosales Salazar and her 3-month-old son, whose name hasn’t been released, with their throats slashed. According to reports, Rosales allegedly slashed his daughter’s throat, got the 3-month-old and stood over his daughter as she lay bleeding on the driveway and told her, “Here’s your bastard.”

Deputies charged him with two counts of attempted first-degree murder and at a hearing his bond was set at $1 million per count.

But the 3-month-old died Friday afternoon and detectives upgraded one of the charges to first-degree murder. Rosales Salazar was still in critical condition today night, Sheriff’s Lt. Larry King said.

Rosales’ arraignment is scheduled for June 21, but in coming weeks, prosecutors will review detectives’ reports and determine what charges to file against Rosales. If they believe first-degree murder is the most appropriate charge, they will have to convene a grand jury to obtain an indictment for first-degree murder. A panel of prosecutors that includes State Attorney Steve Russell may meet to determine whether the death penalty is warranted in the case.

Court records show the father and daughter have a past of domestic violence. In October 2008, deputies arrived at another Lehigh home where the family lived to find Rosales Salazar’s face swollen and beaten. They placed Rosales in handcuffs and charged him with misdemeanor battery, although the state attorney’s office declined to prosecute, according to the Lee County Clerk of Court website.

9:26 a.m. update — First court appearance for Manuel DeJesus Rosales

A day after his 3-month old grandson died — allegedly at his hand — Manuel DeJesus Rosales is now being held at the Lee County Jail without bond.

Rosales, 43, was charged by Lee County Sheriff’s deputies Friday with one count each of first-degree murder and attempted first-degree murder. They arrested him Thursday and charged him with two counts of attempted first-degree murder after the infant and his 20-year-old daughter were found with slashed throats in the driveway of their duplex on Gilbert Avenue South in Lehigh Acres.

Appearing via closed circuit television from the Lee County Jail’s Core facility, Rosales appeared to be wearing a padded anti-suicide suit and was surrounded by three guards. He said “good morning” to Lee County Judge Leigh Frizzell Hayes when he picked up the telephone in the jail to communicate to the judge, who was in the Lee County Justice Center. That was all he said.

Hayes revoked his previous bond of $2 million, which was set Friday morning.

“I am concerned that he is a flight risk and a danger to the community,” she said. “And I will hold him no bond.”

As of late Friday, Rosales’ daughter, Karminda Rosales Salazar, was still in critical condition.

His next court appearance is scheduled for June 21.

Karminda Rosales Salazar tried for 19 months to get away from her father.

Her fear of Manuel DeJesus Rosales was realized Thursday night — the same day Rosales Salazar’s protective order against him expired — when he allegedly sliced her throat three times.

Then, deputies allege, he stood over Rosales Salazar as she lay bleeding on the concrete driveway and slashed her 3-month-old son’s throat.

“Here’s your bastard,” he told her.

The baby died hours later.

Rosales, 43, was in jail Friday on $2 million bond and has his first court appearance this morning. He’s accused of first-degree and attempted murder, although a grand jury indictment technically is required for the state attorney’s office to charge him with first-degree murder.

Rosales Salazar, 20, remained in critical condition, although it could not be confirmed Friday night in which hospital she is admitted.

Her child’s death marks the second homicide to result from domestic violence in Lehigh Acres in the past two weeks.

On May 12, Zacarias Jaime Izquierdo, 68, allegedly shot to death his wife, Maria DeLourdes Bauza, 48, at their home on 21st Street Southwest.

On Friday, the driveway at the duplex the father and daughter shared on Gilbert Avenue South in Lehigh Acres was stained with blood and littered with soiled medical supplies. Blood-soaked stretcher cloths floated in the wind next to furniture left outside from the family’s yard sale last weekend.

Investigators are trying to determine why a father would apparently attempt to kill those close to him. They wonder what could motivate a man to commit such a horrific crime and then meet deputies when they arrived, standing against a white van holding another child.

The Department of Children and Families also is investigating.

The neighborhood reeled from Thursday night’s attacks. Residents said they could still hear the whir of the medical helicopter and see flashing police lights.

“I couldn’t sleep all night,” said neighbor Rafael Lebon, who saw Rosales Salazar and the baby minutes after they’d been stabbed.

“When I saw that little baby lying on the ground I knew what happened. It’s terrible,” he added
Deadly argument

The argument started outside the peach-shaded duplex as night settled in the neighborhood.

First there was yelling, according to sheriff’s reports, then the sound of Rosales Salazar being slapped. Rosales Salazar called to her roommate, Mauricio Maldonado, to help her fend off her father.

Maldonado and Rosales Salazar managed to lock themselves in the house with her 3-month-old son and another child, but Rosales smashed through the sliding glass door, according to sheriff’s reports. He grabbed a knife and stabbed his daughter.

Rosales Salazar struggled out the front door with Rosales following. Her blood dripped on the floor as she ran.

Once outside Rosales slashed Rosales Salazar’s throat, sheriff’s reports say. Then he went back inside and found her baby — whose name is not known — brought him outside and cut his throat.

When deputies arrived at 9:30 p.m., they found Rosales Salazar barely breathing. Her right index finger was severed at the middle knuckle.

Her baby son, lying next to her, wasn’t breathing.

Rosales’ shirt and arms were covered in blood. His right index finger spurted blood from a knife wound.

Deputies threw him to the ground and handcuffed him.

This wasn’t the first time Rosales allegedly attacked his daughter.

Deputies arrived at another Lehigh home where the family lived in October 2008 to find Rosales Salazar’s face swollen and beaten. They placed Rosales in handcuffs and charged him with battery, although the state attorney’s office would later drop the charge. It could not be determined Friday why the charge was dismissed.

Rosales, a Honduras native, had tried to stab his daughter before as well, according to court records.

Rosales Salazar’s May 2009 request for a domestic violence injunction tells how her father broke the phone because she was talking too much, then held a knife to her throat after she called police.

“Do you want to die?” he asked.

Rosales Salazar spent time at the Abuse Counseling and Treatment, or ACT, shelter for abused women in June 2009.

At that time, she, too, would be arrested for attempting to stab a fellow resident, although the state attorney’s office dropped that charge as well for reasons that couldn’t be determined Friday.

She continued to live with her father and various family members and roommates at homes throughout Lehigh Acres. If and where Rosales Salazar and Rosales were employed was unclear Friday.

“So many times, people will go back and continue to live with their abuse partners,” said Colleen Henderson, community coordinator for ACT. “As a child, you want to believe that this person is going to love and protect you.”

Neighbor Zarifer King remembers Rosales Salazar as friendly and sweet, waving hello as she walked a young boy to the bus stop each morning.

King remembers Rosales differently.

“He would sit on the porch and drink,” she said. Bud Light bottles sat scattered Friday in a nearby ditch, where neighbors say he used to toss them.

Once, in 2009, Rosales Salazar tried to move away from her father, but he followed her to her new home and choked her, according to court records. Her request for a protective order against him at that time was denied.

Henderson said situations of extreme violence can be triggered when an aggressor feels he loses power and control.

“You really have no way of knowing what that’s going to lead to,” she said.

Henderson wonders what would have happened if Rosales Salazar had an escape plan, a way to protect herself if her father tried to abuse her again.

“If someone doesn’t learn another way to react, then they are going to go back to their old behavior,” Henderson said. “People don’t realize that.”


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