On July 6, 1989, my brother, Richard Islas was found dead in his home by my parents.
Richard’s body was found in his daughter’s bedroom, bound and gagged; he had been bludgeoned to death. Blood was in every room of Richard’s house but two, indicating that Richard tried to escape or defend himself desperately. Only the room that the murderer rented and Richard’s bedroom were unscathed. Richard’s bloody fingerprints were found on two of the three exits to his home, indicating that he tried to escape the brutality being inflicted on him by this animal but was unable to do so. We know Richard did not die on July 6th because the coroner’s report says that blow flies were already present on his body. My mother never recovered emotionally from finding Richard and we had to hospitalize her over and over, medicate her over and over.
Even after all of that, only a 2nd degree murder conviction was given. Even though lists of Richard’s assets were found in the perp’s handwriting, Richard’s car, wallet, comforter from his bed and all of the perp’s personal belongings were gone and eventually found when the perp was arrested, the jury had two people on it that refused to convict on a death penalty case, thus, a compromise jury verdict.
It seems like so long ago when you count the years and for any other instance, it might be. Not for this one. I still miss my brother every day.