If two Salt Lake men will plead guilty to charges of capital homicide, prosecutors have agreed not to seek the death penalty in their cases.
The Salt Lake County attorney's office has offered plea bargains to Thomas Trujillo, 23, and Andy L. Vigil, 20. Both are charged with first-degree murder in separate cases and, if convicted, could be sentenced to die for the crimes.Vigil is charged with sexually assaulting and killing his mother, Juanita Madrigal, 40, with a baseball bat and is also charged with raping a 4-year-old girl.
Wednesday, Vigil signed a statement that waived his preliminary hearing and indicated that he will plead guilty to first-degree murder, a capital offense, and sexual abuse of a child, a second-degree felony.
In return, prosecutors will recommend he be given a sentence of life in prison to run concurrently with the recommended 1-to-15-year sentence for the sex abuse charge.
According to court documents and police reports, Vigil is accused of raping the child in the early morning hours of Sept. 2. Witnesses said he then walked into his mother's room and was carrying a baseball bat.
Vigil ordered his mother to disrobe, documents said. She agreed but reminded Vigil that she was his mother and that there was a 1-month-old baby sleeping on the bed, court documents further state. Vigil later came out of the bedroom carrying the baseball bat and said his mother had been injured and needed help.
Madrigal died about 12 hours later from head injuries that were "consistent with being inflicted by a baseball bat," according to the documents. The 4-year-old also suffered injuries that may have been caused by someone striking her and raping her.
Vigil is scheduled to appear before 3rd District Judge Homer Wilkinson on Dec. 14.
Trujillo, also known as Thomas Noffsinger, is charged with first-degree murder in connection with the stabbing death of Victor Aguilar, 37, on March 3. He is also charged with aggravated burglary and theft.
Defense attorney Andrew Valdez said prosecutors have offered to allow Trujillo to plead guilty to first-degree murder, and if so, they will not seek the death penalty.
"But at this point, he has not agreed to that," Valdez told 3rd District Judge Timothy Hansen during a hearing Thursday.
A trial for Trujillo has been scheduled for Jan. 8, but deputy county attorney Richard Shepherd said the plea offer will be honored until Dec. 14.
Trujillo and co-defendant Grant David Stensrud, 21, are charged with burglarizing Marie Callender Pies, 52 W. 200 South. On the day of the homicide, Trujillo was questioned by police. He said he and Stensrud were stealing the safe when Aguilar showed up for work at the restaurant and surprised them.
According to testimony in a preliminary hearing, Trujillo said he grabbed a knife to protect Stensrud after Aguilar grabbed his partner. Aguilar also grabbed the knife, but when he let go, Trujillo cut him in the throat.
The two men then left with the safe that contained $4,550 in cash, according to testimony.
Stensrud's trial is scheduled for early February.