Alegria 'behaved normally' after 7-year-old was slain, girlfriend testifies

2013-10-16T18:00:00Z 2013-10-17T07:40:33Z Alegria 'behaved normally' after 7-year-old was slain, girlfriend testifiesBy Patrick McNamara Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star

The former girlfriend of a man accused of murdering a 7-year-old girl testified he behaved normally just hours after the killing.

Yani Flores said she didn’t see any difference in Kyle Alegria when he came to her house the night Rhia Almeida died.

“He was real quiet and didn’t say a whole lot,” Flores said. “But it wasn’t an uncomfortable silence.”

Flores, 26, said Alegria often was quiet and the couple regularly sat in silence or walked around the streets of Ajo, where they lived.

Alegria, 24, is on trial for first-degree murder, kidnapping and sexual conduct with a minor under the age of 15 for the 2009 killing of Rhia .

The girl had gone to Alegria’s house to visit his younger brother the day she was killed and her body discarded in a wash. Alegria was arrested and charged with her killing the following day.

Deputy Pima County Attorney Rick Unklesbay played a video of a visit Flores made to Pima County Jail to see Alegria a month after his arrest.

In the video, the couple discussed the girl’s death and Alegria admits to killing her. 

“I know I didn’t do that,” Alegria said about the accusation he sexually assaulted the girl before killing her. “But I did kill her.”

When Flores asked why Alegria killed the girl, he answered that he didn’t plan to.

Defense attorney Brian Metcalf asked Flores about Alegria’s depression and ritualized behaviors.

Flores said Alegria frequently fought with his parents and grandparents and described how he compulsively touched items in specific ways, such as discs in a DVD player, water faucets and a jug of water in the refrigerator.

Alegria’s trial continues today in Pima County Superior Court.

Contact reporter Patrick McNamara at 573-4241 or pmcnamara@azstarnet.com. On Twitter @pm929.

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