Mother and son tag-teamers Leticia and Noel Carrasco received life sentences today for robbing and murdering a man in a Buena Park motel room after momma picked the fellow up in a Stanton bar with promises of sex.
Leticia Carrasco, the stunner at right, can apply for parole from prison in 25 years when she is 78. Noel Carrasco, 27, must spend the rest of his life behind bars.
Three days before Christmas 2008, the mom met 42-year-old Matias Ojeda Vazquez at La Barca nightclub and convinced him to come with her to the Covered Wagon Motel, promising sex for money. But waiting inside the bathroom was Carrasco's son, who demanded the guest's money. When Vazquez refused to hand any over, Noel Carrasco repeatedly stabbed him five times in the chest and stomach, struck him in the head to produce multiple skull fractures and choked him out with a telephone cord.
The mother and son cleaned the motel room and wrapped Vazquez's body in bedding, with a plastic bag over his head and a dog food bag over his feet. They fled to Las Vegas in Vazquez's Honda Accord to dump the corpse.
However, after Vazquez was reported missing to Orange Police that Dec. 31, Noel Carrasco used the missing man's phone to make 100 calls and text messages to his girlfriend in Vegas, Cheryl Madzelan. He was arrested on Jan. 12, 2009, by Las Vegas Metro Police. Leticia Carrasco, still with the Accord, was arrested two days later in Sin City.
She would lead authorities to the Vazquez remains in the middle of the desert off I-15 near Yermo and also be the first of the pair to be convicted, on one felony count of murder and one felony count of second degree robbery on Jan. 31. Her sentencing was delayed until her son was found guilty April 3 of special circumstances murder in the commission of a robbery and felony second degree robbery.
Noel Carrasco had told Orange County Superior Court Judge Thomas Goethals that he regretted the murder and deserved a stricter punishment than his mother, City News Service reports. During the trials, it was revealed that Vazquez's blood was found in the motel room the mother and son rented, and that Noel's DNA was on the steering wheel of the dead man's Accord.
City News Service reports today that Thomas Watts, a cellmate of Noel Carrasco's, told investigators that while they were playing chess, the defendant told him how he killed the victim. He reportedly said he only intended to rob Vazquez, not kill him, but was drunk and desperate to steal the man's money to pay their rent. The Carrascos wound up fleeing with the dead man's watch, the Accord and about $800–not a very good rate of exchange for essentially spending the rest of their lives in prison.