The trial of Jose E. Reyes, the Houston 18-year-old accused of the horrifying “Satanic ritual” murder of 15-year-old Corriann Cervantes in February, opened in a Texas state court Monday with prosecutors spelling out in graphic detail the sickening acts committed against the girl — gruesome crimes that even Reyes own defense lawyer acknowledged had actually taken place.
But Reyes lawyer, Bob Loper, appeared to adopt the strategy of trying to pin the worst of the crimes on Reyes’ younger accomplice, Victor Alas.
“This was a horrible murder of a young girl and we’re not going to shy away from that,” Loper admitted to the jury in his opening statement. “You’ve got to ferret out for yourselves exactly what happened and who is responsible for which parts.”
Reyes and Alas, prosecutors say, wanted to sell their souls to the devil, which they believed meant they must carry out heinous crimes.
According to prosecutor John Jordan, Cervantes accompanied the two boys to a vacant apartment in Houston’s Clear Lake district after an evening of partying with booze and pot. At the apartment, they engaged in consensual sex — but the party quickly took a dark and violent turn.
“Whether or not the devil was involved, what happened in that apartment was sadistic and inhumane,” Jordan told the jury, going on to spare nothing in his description of the brutal torture-slaying.
After or during the initial, consensual sex act, Reyes and his friend mercilessly beat Cervantes with the porcelain lid of a toilet tank, leaving pieces of porcelain embedded in her face when her body was found four days later, on February 8.
The two teens violently raped the battered girl, stabbed her numerous times with a screwdriver in her face and body — then used a plastic window blind to gouge out her eyes. The whole time, Cervantes was still alive.
Cervantes told Alas to strangle the girl with a belt in order to seal his deal with Satan, according to the prosecutor.
Police say that Reyes confessed in detail to the grisly murder shortly after his arrest. He told police that after the two boys had sex with Cervantes, they attacked her. Corriann tried to run, screaming, “Why are you doing this to me?”
She continued to plead for her life as they tortured her and dug her eyes out.
“He said he had no regrets,” Jordan told the jury.
The Jose E. Reyes trial in expected to last the remainder of the week. Alas will be tried separately, also as an adult, although he was only 16 at the time of the murder. If convicted, both boys could face the death penalty.
[Images Via AP and Facebook]