SAN ANTONIO – After more than two hours of deliberation, a jury disagreed with a woman's claim that she acted in self-defense when she killed her boyfriend and instead found her guilty of murder.
An argument between the couple turned deadly on the night of June 10, 2017. Laura Flores-Messick, 32, shot her boyfriend Chason Montez-Deoca, 40, once in the chest and then slashed his throat.
“You don’t even consider self-defense,” prosecutor Thom Nesbit told the jury during closing arguments Monday. “It’s just murder, period.”
According to the jury charge, the panel was allowed to consider self-defense, and that it what Flores-Messick’s attorney asked the panel to do.
“There’s more than enough evidence for you to find that she very could well have acted in self-defense,” defense attorney Ed Garza told the jury.
Flores-Messick and Montez-Deoca had argued that night, according to Messick.
Flores-Messick admitted that she fired a single shot during the argument, striking Montez-Deoca in the chest. She then slashed his throat, she said, “to make sure he was dead.”
Prosecutor Talia Triesh said forensic evidence supported the murder charge. She demonstrated how the bullet that struck Montez-Deoca in the chest first passed through the palm of his outstretched hand.
“That’s a defensive posture,” Triesh said.
The jury deliberated for just over two hours before returning the guilty verdict.
Flores-Messick, who is facing a maximum punishment of life in prison, has opted for Judge Catherine Torres-Stahl to sentence her. That will be done following the completion of a presentencing investigation.