A Buffalo man is on trial for the stabbing death of his estranged wife, according to WIVB. Police say that more than 30 years ago, Michael Rodriguez stabbed his estranged wife, Patricia Scinta Rodriguez, 108 times in the Lackawanna Holy Cross Cemetery on Apr. 13, 1979 (Good Friday). The death case went cold, after police didn’t have enough evidence to charge Michael Rodriguez. Today, several of the original New York officers who investigated the case are now dead.
Erie County jurors are hearing strong evidence in the case against Michael Rodriguez, whom police say got away with murder for three decades. The case was reopened 5 years ago in 2009 but Rodriguez wasn’t charged with second degree murder until 2013. Technological advances have helped investigators tie Michael Rodriguez to the cemetery death of Patty Scinta. The physical and forensic evidence includes Michael Rodriguez’ semen that was found on the victim’s clothing, as well a Rodriguez’ brown leather jacket that was stained with Patty’s blood. Here is what Diane M. LaVallee, Assistant Attorney General, told the jury.
“He was wearing a brown leather jacket. A leather jacket that 30 years later was tested for DNA, and Patty’s blood was found on it. “
The prosecution also has two ex-girlfriends that say Michael Rodriguez confessed that he had murdered his former wife. A former live-in-girlfriend from 1979 told cops that Michael Rodriguez called her on the phone that night to tell her that he had killed Patty, the mother of his two small children. Michael Rodriguez made the following statements, according to Diane LaVallee.
“You need to come home right away, I just killed Patty. () I just stabbed Patty in the cemetery.”
When his then pregnant girlfriend arrived at the home, she found Michael on the bed, and Michael’s bloody jacket. She tried to clean the jacket but missed a spot. She told New York detectives that she was afraid to come forward with the information all those years ago because Rodriguez had threatened to kill her.
According to Buffalo News, prosecutors also have a person who saw Michael Rodriguez at a local bar with Patty Scinta Rodriguez the morning of her death. He also saw the couple leave together, headed to the Lackawanna Holy Cross Cemetery.
Michael Rodriguez’s trial prosecutors are confident that the jury will return a guilty verdict. Defense attorney Paul J. Cambria believes that due to the unreliability of the evidence and questions about the handling of the evidence, the jury will not be able to “sustain a guilty verdict.” Inquisitr recently reported on another cold case that was reopened, involving the disappearance of three girls from 1968.
(Photo Credit: Dreamin Demon)