Photo by Alexander Nguyen
Photo by Alexander Nguyen

A 41-year-old man was convicted of murder today for the stabbing death of a man whose body was dismembered in a downtown Los Angeles hotel room.

Edward Garcia is facing life in prison without the possibility of parole when he is sentenced Aug. 14. His wife, Melissa Hope Garcia, 30, is also charged with the Nov. 28 killing of Herbert Tracy White in room 66 at the Continental hotel.

She is awaiting trial.

Deputy District Attorney John McKinney told jurors during the trial that the couple were carrying out a “fantasy they had about cutting up a human being.” He said the victim’s body had “very little to no blood” left in it as a result of what he said a prosecution witness had opined was a “ritualistic killing.”

Some of the victim’s remains were later found in a backpack in a corner of the room, while other body parts were found bundled up underneath the blood- stained mattress which had been flipped over and stripped of its sheets, McKinney said.

Defense attorney Haydeh Takasugi acknowledged that Garcia was responsible for the killing, but disputed that the killing was premeditated. Takasugi also said the case was “not about dismemberment.”

— City News Service 

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