Brutally murdered: Jorge Steven Lopez Mercado
The man accused of brutally killing and dismembering a gay Puerto Rican teen last year has been sentenced to 99 years in prison.
Juan Antonio Martinez Matos, a 26 year old father of four, pleaded guilty to the first-degree murder of 19 year old Jorge Steven Lopez Mercado in November.
He also decapitated and dismembered Mercado’s body and then set it on fire in the town of Cayey, Puerto Rico.
It was reported after his arrest that Matos claimed that the student was in drag, pretended to be a female prostitute and then tried to rob him.
Other reports say that despite insisting that he hates “homosexuals” he lured the teen with cocaine in order to have sex with him.
Matos’ lawyer, Celimar Gracia, told Primera Hora newspaper that his client agreed to plead guilty in exchange for other weapons charges being dropped by prosecutors.
“He felt this was the best way to end this case,” Gracia said.
Myriam Mercado, the victim’s mother also spoke to Primera Hora. “The verdict is the end of a chapter. We can find a little peace in that but it will never bring Steven back. At least there is justice in Puerto Rico,” she said.