Witness details plot in Paso Robles murder
November 25, 2014
A key witness in the murder trial of a Paso Robles woman testified Monday about events that took place on the night of the killing and in the aftermath. [Tribune]
Maria del Carmen Granados Fajardo, 50, is accused of paying several people a total of $12,000 to kidnap and brutally injure her ex-boyfriend Victor Sanchez, 37. In Feb. 2013, a group of teenagers tasked with abducting Sanchez and shooting him in the kneecap ended up killing him.
Fajardo allegedly ordered the attack out of jealousy and anger. Testimony indicates that Fajardo was jealous that Sanchez was pursuing relations with other women and was angered that he sued her successfully for $7,000 in small claims court.
In Oct. 2012, Fajardo allegedly hired a group of assailants to break his leg and mess his face up. Sanchez suffered injuries in the attack after assailants struck him with a tire iron, but the damage did not satisfy Fajardo, witnesses say.
The prosecution’s key witness, Christine Garner, who has agreed to a plea deal in the case, testified Monday that she assisted her husband David Hernandez, who coordinated the fatal Feb. 2013 attack.
Garner said she drove around four assailants on the night of the murder who were instructed by Hernandez to shoot Sanchez in the leg and leave him there. After the shooting, Fajardo gave Garner $8,000 to pay Hernandez, Garner testified.
When Fajardo learned that Sanchez had died in the shooting, her face turned stone cold, Garner said.
Garner testified that she attempted to flee, but crashed her car and failed to escape. She later fled with Hernandez to Mexico, his native land, after investigators began questioning her family.
Garner feared Hernandez would kill her if she did not flee with him to Mexico, she said. A little more than a month after the escape, Garner was arrested in Mexico.
Hernandez evaded capture, though, and remains at large. Authorities believe that Hernandez, as well as the three other at-large suspects in the case, are hiding in Mexico.
During cross-examination, Fajardo’s attorney Paul Phillips questioned Garner on her drug use. Garner admitted that she was a heavy drug user and that she smoked methamphetamine several times on the day of the murder.
Garner’s plea deal requires her to serve eight years in state prison. She plead no contest to robbery, three counts of conspiracy to commit kidnapping and being accessory to murder.