Trial in dragging death of ASU student set for May - East Valley Tribune: East Valley Local News

Trial in dragging death of ASU student set for May

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Posted: Friday, March 23, 2012 10:04 am | Updated: 2:51 pm, Fri Oct 5, 2012.

The trial involving the man authorities say is responsible for the 2010 dragging death of Arizona State University student Kyleigh Sousa is set for May.

The attorney for Joseluis Marquez, the 21-year-old transient — arrested nearly seven months after the 21-year-old woman’s death and charged with first-degree murder and robbery — had submitted a plea proposal to prosecutors earlier this month, but prosecutors rejected the proposal, according to the Maricopa County Prosecutor’s Office.

Marquez’s attorney, Geoffrey Fish, said Marquez had agreed to plead to a lesser charge of manslaughter, which would not carry up to a life sentence for first-degree murder.

Sousa, 21, died on May 26, 2010, hours after police say Marquez grabbed Sousa’s purse in front of an IHOP near the ASU campus and sped off in a champagne-colored 2008 Dodge Charger as her arm became entangled on the purse strap. Sousa, an aspiring trial attorney who was working as a waitress at the Tavern on Mill at the time of her death, broke free as she fell hard to the ground and under the car, police said. The blunt force trauma caused Sousa to die hours later at a nearby hospital.

Police were able to identify Marquez after more than 500 tips, a speed photo enforcement ticket of him behind the wheel of a rental car from California, and after a witness was able to provide details for a composite sketch of him.

Marquez is scheduled to next appear in Maricopa County Superior Court on Friday, where his attorney, Geoffrey Fish said that they plan to make another plea proposal. Fish would not comment on the details of the proposal.

Prosecutors have not extended any plea deal offers, according to Jerry Cobb, a spokesman for Maricopa County prosecutor Bill Montgomery.

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