Police investigator takes stand in Serrato murder trial

May 29, 2002|By MARIO RENTERÍA

Staff Writer

The lead investigator in the murder case against a 40-year-old El Centro man accused of fatally stabbing Edward De La Cruz, 19, testified Tuesday.

El Centro police Detective Angie Cuevas is the investigating officer in the case against Salvador Serrato.

Serrato's attorney, Eduardo Rivera of Calexico, asked Cuevas during cross-examination if police took any samples of blood found on the scene or clothing of those involved in the altercation. She said they didn't.

Rivera is attempting to establish that Serrato was the victim and that De La Cruz punched him with an object three times on the face before the stabbing last summer.


During his opening statement, Rivera said Serrato suffered a gash to his forehead from the unexpected attack by De La Cruz.

Rivera was seeking to show that because no blood samples were taken, the blood at the scene could have belonged to either Serrato or De La Cruz.

The trial was recessed until Thursday morning. A 17-year-old witness who was in the house near where the incident happened is set to testify then.

The incident occurred on the front lawn of a residence in the 200 block of East Olive Avenue. It happened near sunrise July 1.

De La Cruz, a former El Centro resident living in Harbor City, was in town visiting relatives when he was killed.

>>Staff Writer Mario Rentería can be reached at 337-3441.

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