A man who stabbed his flatmate to death after he falsely accused him of kissing his girlfriend has been jailed.
Carlos Velez, 20 (22.05.00) was convicted of murdering 26-year-old David Martinez after a trial at the Old Bailey.
He was sentenced to 17 years’ imprisonment on Friday, 26 June.
The court heard that 26-year old David had been living with Velez, his girlfriend and his mother in a flat in North Birkbeck Road, E11.
On 6 March 2019, Velez had an argument with his girlfriend after he demanded to know what she had been doing in the kitchen with David.
On this day, David messaged his cousins to say Velez was “all crazy and was asking if had kissed his girlfriend” and “I am going to try to go on Friday else I’ll end up dead”.
Velez’s girlfriend, who had been in her room, then went into the kitchen and saw Velez attacking David with a knife. She saw Velez stab him a number of times in the head and stomach.
Despite his injuries, David managed to run out of the flat and alert nearby pedestrians who called 999.
Police and paramedics rushed to the scene and treated him, however he died a short time later due to the severity of his injuries.
In a statement that was read to the court, David’s sister, Katerine Martinez-Valencia, said: “I make the statement on behalf of my family, my mother is unable to compile this as she is simply too distraught to relive the events that has affected all of our lives in the most terrible way.
“I write the statement on behalf of my mother, Nohora Valencia-Sapuy; my father, Jaime Martinez-Alfonso; my brother, Jaime Martinez-Valencia; and my cousin, Daniella Valencia-Sapuy, who lives in the UK and was able to attend the court in person.
“First I would like to talk about David, who we were all lucky enough to have in our lives until his very premature death at the age of 26. He was an amazing man who had a love for his family that was unmatched; he was a young man with great prospects. He was learning English in order to join me in Switzerland to study at university and the plan was for this to happen in the months that followed his death. He had great humour, intelligence and a hard worker; these are traits not just recognised by his family but also his colleagues who I have been in contact with since these most tragic circumstance that have been put upon us.
“The experience of the day that we learnt of his death will never leave us, we were all aware of David's messages suggesting he was in danger, and then his lack of response; our hearts dropped, lack of response was so out of character for David, we knew he must have been hurt! It was six hours of frantic efforts to trace him at almost every hospital in London before the police were able to track down Daniella and break to her the most horrific news. My mother and I still did not believe this until my mother had the most awful task of identifying her son’s body.
“We have been unable to attend his trial due the pandemic, we understand this is beyond anyone’s control but we should not be in this situation at all, I have been able to follow by video and there are no words to describe what it is like to hear how David was attacked in the most brutal way and then hear the person who indisputably done this lie about what happened to both the police and the court.
“It's clear to me and my family that the defendant knew what he was doing, and maybe the attack stems from knowing what a kind man David was and how close he was to his family.
“I would describe myself as strong but never the less distraught and have just about been able to continue with my life studying in Switzerland, it's not the same for the rest of my family. My mother is always crying, spontaneously, on the sight of David's picture and when speaking about David. She is unable to sleep and I have not seen my mother smile since this tragic day.
“My father and brother live in Mexico and were in total shock for a month, my father flew to Spain hoping to see David's ashes but he had to return prior to the cremation as the process after a murder takes many more weeks than usual, to this day he asks what hospital David is in, this breaks my heart.”