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WATCH: Closing Arguments in Luis Toledo Triple-Murder Trial


Closing arguments are expected Thursday in the trial of Luis Alberto Toledo. Court is scheduled to start at 9 a.m. EST, and likely only to progress until lunchtime. Deliberations are set to start Friday.

Prosecutors claim Toledo committed the second-degree murder of his wife Yessenia Suarez, and the first-degree murders of her 8-year-old son Michael Otto, and her 9-year-old daughter Thalia Otto. This defendant is also charged with tampering with physical evidence because he allegedly covered up the crime. He faces the death penalty if convicted in the children’s deaths.

The bodies were never found, but authorities indicted him based on other evidence. The Lake Mary Police Department said he confronted Yessenia at her job on Oct. 22, and slapped her on the face. He was angry over certain text messages between her and a co-worker, they said. The next day, based on the prompting of Suarez’s mother, Volusia County sheriff’s deputies did a welfare check on Yessenia and her children. They discovered blood at the scene, and believed that it was scrubbed of evidence. A neighbor told them Toledo asked him for help that morning. This witness saw him wipe down Yessenia’s black Honda, and throw away items in a dumpster. Deputies also got in touch with one of Suarez’s co-workers. The man claimed he was her lover, and said he spoke with her over phone just after midnight on Oct. 23. They believe he was the last person to make contact with her.

Prosecutors argue that Toledo killed Suarez over the affair. They say Toledo admitted to cops that he “karate-chopped” Yessenia in the neck, causing her death. He killed the children to make sure there weren’t any witnesses, they said. The defense insists the state doesn’t have enough evidence. No bodies were found, and there are no witnesses, they say. In interview footage, Toledo blamed the kids’ deaths on a neighbor. Not true, claim authorities. Toledo is responsible for everything.

The state quickly rested its case on Wednesday. Their final witness: Sabrina Newell, one of Yessenia’s friends. Toledo called her from jail.

Jurors got to hear the recording. Toledo said Yessenia ran his life. He talked to her about his version of events, saying that Suarez attacked him.

The defense called only three witnesses. First, they brought up Tina Williams, a bus driver. She thought she saw someone–she didn’t recall the man’s race–at a Publix wiping down a car. Toledo told cops that his neighbor Tyshawn Jackson killed both children to make sure there were no witnesses, and hid the bodies of all three victims to hide the evidence.

Next, the defense recalled Volusia Sheriffs Office Sgt. Kurt Schoeps to the stand. Finally, neighbor Tyshawn Jackson testified. He’s the man Toledo blamed for the children’s deaths.

Toledo did not take the stand in his own defense.

Stay with and the LawNewz Network for continuing coverage of the trial.

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