Punishment Trial Begins in Murder Case

Tuesday, May 24, 2011 - 8:15am

Dozens of potential jurors filled the 107th District Courtroom this morning as the case for Gilberto Garza Jr. enters the punishment phase.

The 43-year-old pled guilty to stabbing his wife's friend to death back in July of 2010. Brownsville Police say the stabbing was the end result of a domestic dispute between Garza and his wife, Sulia Garza. Police records state the victim, 46-year-old, Ruth Ramirez Salcedo, went over to the couple's residence to help her friend. When she got there, the wife got away but Garza held Salcedo inside and stabbed her more than 11 times in the chest and neck. Police found Salcedo on the kitchen floor.

Salcedo was single and had two children.

Authorities say the Garza’s were married for 16 years but were going through a difficult divorce in early 2010. The couple has three children ranging from 8 to 18 years old.

After the stabbing, Garza fled the scene but was found two days later at his home where police say he killed Salcedo. He was found in the bathroom of the master bedroom.

At his arraignment in 2010, he was given a $1 million bond but not too long ago, he pled guilty to the murder.

Earlier today, the potential jurors were questioned and just this afternoon a jury was selected. The trial for Garza’s punishment begins tomorrow morning at 9.

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