A not guilty plea was entered by landscaper Freddy Perez-Rodas in the murder of his wife, Escondido police officer Laura Perez, who was shot and killed in Murrieta, California, on Wednesday, ABC News is reporting today. Authorities say, Freddy Perez-Rodas had already admitted to shooting his wife but still entered a not guilty plea. Perez-Rodas is charged with murder and arson.
On Wednesday night, police were dispatched to the scene of a fire located at 24562 Grand Oaks Court. When investigators arrived they found a burning house, and a man who claimed that his wife was trapped inside. After the fire was extinguished, police became suspicious, and the case became a missing person’s case, according to the Daily Mail.
When investigators probed further, they say Freddy Perez-Rodas admitted that he shot his wife and burned the house to cover his tracks. Perez-Rodas led police investigators to a storage facility, where officers discovered 25-year-old Laura Perez’ dead body. Police on the scene say the Escondido cop had a gunshot wound to the chest. Police also discovered $100,000 in cash inside the storage facility.
According to Rodas, the two had argued just before he shot her. Then he decided to concoct a plan to cover over the murder by setting a fire and hiding her body at the All-Size Storage facility in Moreno Valley temporarily.
Neighbors are shocked that Freddy Perez-Rodas has entered a not guilty plea, despite his confession to police. Neighbors also say the couple, who had only been in the area for a few months, seemed like a nice,quiet couple who kept to themselves. Laura Perez was praised by her fellow officers in the Escondido Police Department. They say the recent academy grad was a smart, dedicated cop who really enjoyed her work. She was so well-liked in the community that one man came forward with a recent photo that he had taken with Officer Perez because he was so impressed with her, according to NBC-7.
The case is somewhat similar to the Linda Yancey Georgia cop killing case. Linda Yancey was shot and killed by her husband in their home. Her husband tried covering up the crime and by framing an illegal immigrant for the murder. Yancey entered a not guilty plea in the case.
Entering a not guilty plea, gives the defendant the opportunity to have his lawyer suppress evidence in the hopes that a jury might might find a shadow of a doubt, resulting in a not guilty verdict, less time or a lesser charge. Though most women are victims of domestic violence and domestic abuse, about 18% percent of men have also been victims of domestic abuse, according to the Inquisitr.
The Escondido Police Department, as well as friends and family are sure that Rodas’ not guilty plea won’t help him in a bit, and that in the end the victim’s family will receive justice for Perez’ murder.