FORT COLLINS, Colo. (CBS4) – A man accused of killing his girlfriend’s sister has gone on trial for murder, but the defense says prosecutors have the wrong man.
The trial began with opening statements Tuesday morning. In the afternoon the jury heard a litany of the places where blood was found, splattered and smeared, in the room where Elizabeth Olivas was found stabbed to death in December 2009.
Prosecutors even brought in the actual carpet from the room and rolled it out in front of the jury, literally bringing part of the murder scene to the courtroom.
Prosecutors say Horacio Pasillas-Rodriguez stabbed his girlfriend’s 21-year-old sister more than 120 times in the neck and head. Rodriguez’s defense attorney says he had no motive to kill the woman and would have had difficulty overpowering her because he is much smaller than the victim.
The killing happened at an apartment north of Fort Collins where both the victim and the suspect lived.
In opening arguments The Coloradoan newspaper says the prosecutor told the jury the suspect’s DNA was found on the victim’s body and his hands were cut as if he’d done the stabbing.
The defense points out that DNA from an unidentified man, not Rodriguez, was found on the victim’s neck and on a pen used to write a violent message on her mirror.
Sorting through the murder is not going to be a quick process and the trial is scheduled to last 12 days.