In Vista Superior Court, the jury convicted Jose Casteneda, an illegal immigrant from Guatemala, of first degree murder with special circumstances in the death of 2 year old Cesar Razo.
Now the sentencing phase has proceeded to determine whether Mr. Casteneda should be sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole or to death. In the penalty phase the prosecutor, Keith Watanabe, will introduce evidence in aggravation to show why the jury should come back with a death verdict.
Mr. Casteneda’s attorney will introduce evidence in mitigation usually in the form of testimony of his parents, family members and other loved ones. It appears that the jury may be deadlocked on whether to impose death or life without the possibility of parole. I will keep you apprised!