OAKLAND -- A 23-year-old Alameda woman will be sentenced to 25 years to life in prison next month for killing a man who got her hooked on methamphetamine while deep in the throes of addiction.
Victoria Martinez's trial was in the early stages of jury selection this week when she pleaded no contest to first-degree murder of 44-year-old Curtis Williams, who was shot, bludgeoned and strangled on July 4, 2012 in his RV parked in Oakland's Meadow Brook neighborhood.
Martinez went to the RV that night while Williams was out and told his friend that she planned to kill Williams because he owed her $20 and she was sick of him taking advantage of her, prosecutor Tim Wagstaffe said. When Williams, a mechanic, returned to the RV later that night, Martinez bound him by his hands and feet and killed him nearly the same way she had foretold to his friend.
"I think she was in a very dark place with her methamphetamine addiction and for whatever reason, she directed her animosity toward Curtis," Wagstaffe said.
Martinez was not motivated by money, said her attorney Tom Worthington. Martinez had been submitting to Williams' "forceful" demands for sex in exchange for meth and she wanted to talk to him, for him to apologize, according to the attorney. Williams had manhandled her on occasions so she tied him to get through the confrontation, Worthington said.
"She's horrified by what she did, horrified," Worthington said. "She doesn't know how things could get so out of hand that she could do that."
Worthington planned to introduce evidence at trial that Martinez suffered from intimate partner battering at Williams' hands. She was introduced to Williams a year-and-a-half before his death by a mutual friend who suggested she get meth from Williams to help her through the stress and long hours caring for her invalid mother, as well as the breakdown of her marriage, Worthington said.
Martinez faced 50 years to life in prison before she accepted a plea deal. She is scheduled to be sentenced March 13.
Contact Malaika Fraley at 925-234-1684. Follow her at Twitter.com/malaikafraley.ors