Thomas Castillo, 32, and his estranged wife Carol Sanchez, high school sweethearts, were living apart in the summer of 2010.
Their marriage was in trouble, according to Castillo’s lawyer Mark Stevens, and Sanchez was living with her lover Rogelio Nava.
Stevens said that on the evening of Aug. 14, 2010, Sanchez had rejected Castillo’s attempt at reconciliation.
“Thomas just snapped,” Stevens said.
Castillo is on trial for capital murder. He’s accused of lying in wait at Nava’s home and stabbing Nava to death when the couple returned home.
“There’s a man on top of his wife in a bed and it’s Mr. Nava,” Stevens told the jury during opening remarks in Castillo’s trial on Thursday. "Thomas strikes Mr. Nava in the back of the head and on his back."
Nava died instantly.
Castillo then began chasing Sanchez around the home, according to prosecutors.
“That’s where his hurt, his disappointment his anger has come to,” Stevens said.
“Using knife after knife,” said prosecutor Linda Molina. “Knives breaking, knives littered throughout the house. He attacked her.”
Sanchez was stabbed and slashed multiple times but survived.
Though Castillo is on trial for capital murder, the state has waived the death penalty.
If he is found guilty, he is facing an automatic sentence of life in prison without the possibility of parole.
Testimony will continue on Friday in Judge Philip Kazen’s 227th District Court.