Judge appointed to hear double homicide trial that could last months

Retired judge Jaime Garza will hear a double homicide trial of a Camargo man that is expected to last two to three months after it begins at the tail-end of January.

The appointment followed a brief hearing in auxiliary court Tuesday.

Martin Margarito, 33, is accused of shooting and killing Victor Manuel Garcia and Elia Margarita on Oct. 29, 2014.

Assistant District Attorney Lauren Sepulveda said during the August hearing that multiple agencies participated in the investigation, which included kidnapping, murder and recovered weapon crime scenes in different areas of Hidalgo County.

The case will be heard by Garza in Auxiliary Court due to the expected length of the case.

Margarito is already serving a 40-year prison sentence on federal kidnapping charges for kidnapping and binding two people over an alleged lost load of marijuana.

McAllen police arrested the man on Jan. 22, 2015, after responding to a report of a man crying for help while running down a street with rope tied around his arms and legs.

Margarito’s co-defendant in that case, Silvestre Lopez Gomez, 22, was sentenced to five years in prison on state charges of kidnapping.

He was 17 at the time.

Margarito has been having health problems, causing his attorneys, Alejandro Alex Ballesteros and Andres A. Ramos, to object to delays last month in the case.

During a pre-trial hearing in August, the attorneys revealed he is having health problems and that his health is deteriorating while worrying about his murder case.

Margarito requires dialysis.

Last December, he collapsed in the jail and spent two weeks in the hospital.