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Published: Saturday, 10/3/2009

Murder suspect pleads guilty, faces a life term

Rather than go to trial Monday, a Toledo man pleaded guilty Friday to murder in connection with the May 31 shooting of David Taylor, Sr.

Enrique Martinez, 18, of 414 Courtland Ave., faces life in prison with the possibility of parole after 15 years when he is sentenced at 1:30 p.m. Monday by Lucas County Common Pleas Judge Ruth Ann Franks.

He admitted in court that he fired a gun at Mr. Taylor, 50, outside the victim's South Avenue home. Mr. Taylor died about five hours later at Mercy St. Vincent Medical Center.

Police said Mr. Taylor's son, David, Jr., and his son's ex-girlfriend had recently had a fight when Martinez, the young woman's new boyfriend, and four women went to the Taylors' house looking for the younger Mr. Taylor.

The elder Mr. Taylor opened the door and stepped outside, where he got into an argument with the women. He was shot in the back as he tried to go back inside his house.

Martinez was indicted on two counts of murder with firearms specifications and could have faced 18 years to life in prison if convicted of murder with the specification. As part of a plea agreement, Rob Miller, an assistant Lucas County prosecutor, said prosecutors would ask that the first count and the specifications be dismissed at sentencing.

Judge Franks repeatedly asked Martinez whether he understood what his guilty plea meant, and she reminded him several times that a conviction for murder carries a life sentence with eligibility for parole after 15 years. She told him to count on spending his life in prison.

"You will serve your life in prison because there is no guarantee you will ever be released," the judge said. "What is guaranteed is after serving a full 15 years you will be eligible to go before the parole board. There is no guarantee the parole board will grant it."



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