Jury convicts man of murder in 30 minutes

Mario Ramirez, 29, sentenced to life in prison

BEXAR COUNTY, Texas – It took a jury only 30 minutes Monday to convict a man of murder.

Ofelia Alvarado, 25, was found stabbed and strangled to death on Nov. 11, 2010, inside her home on Chickering Avenue. She was found by her sister lying face down, naked in a pool of blood.

Police contacted Mario Ramirez, 29, after neighbors said they saw a blue Chevy Cobalt that belonged to him parked across the street from Alvarado's house at the time of the murder.

According to the Bexar County Criminal District Attorney's Office, Ramirez denied several times that he was at Alvarado's home that day.

Upon seizing Ramirez's vehicle, officers found Alvarado's birth certificate, bloody clothing and two knives. Alvarado and Ramirez's DNA were both found on the knives and clothing.

Detectives said during the trial that the murder scene had been staged to look like a suicide.

When Ramirez took the stand, he told jurors that when he walked in on the victim she was trying to commit suicide. He claimed he tried to stop her but couldn't, saying that he tried choking her to keep her from swallowing pills. He said Alvarez then grabbed two knives and tried to stab herself.

Ramirez was sentenced to life in prison.