The fate of a 20-year-old Tucson man accused of stabbing the mother of his toddler daughter to death in August 2011 is in the hands of a Pima County jury.
Carlos Torres' attorneys argued he killed Ignacia Aranda,17, in the heat of passion, but prosecutors contend he is guilty of first-degree murder.
Torres originally told detectives, his new girlfriend and his parents that Aranda stabbed herself to death, Kellie Johnson, chief criminal deputy county attorney, told jurors during opening statements Wednesday.
Even after detectives pointed out Aranda suffered 19 to 25 stab wounds to her face and throat, Torres contended she killed herself in a fit of jealousy, Johnson said.
It wasn't until two months later that Torres came clean with his parents in telephone conversations from the jail, Johnson said.
Torres admitted he lost his temper and stabbed her to death, Johnson said.
Johnson told jurors the couple began dating when Aranda was 13 and Torres 15.
It was a tumultuous relationship that worsened after the birth of their daughter, Isabella, in February 2010.
Despite misgivings voiced by her mother, in August 2011 Aranda and the baby moved in with Torres at Retro City Apartments, 2475 N. Haskell Drive.
Three days later, Johnson said, Torres left Aranda to visit his other girlfriend, who was 15 at the time.
When he got back, Johnson said, Torres texted and called the other girlfriend to complain Aranda had gone through all of his things.
That same night, Aranda called her mother to pick her and the baby up because she and Torres were fighting, Johnson said.
Before Kelly Aranda, her mother, made it out the door, Ignacia Aranda called back and told her everything was OK and she was staying, Johnson said.
At 8:30 a.m. Aug. 9, Torres called the other girlfriend again and told her Aranda had stabbed herself to death, Johnson said. The girlfriend called Torres' mother, Rachel Vallejo, and she called 911.
When detectives arrived, they discovered Aranda had been dead for hours, Johnson said.
They also discovered Torres had called for an ambulance to take him to the hospital at 2 a.m. so he could have his injured hand stitched up.
Assistant Pima County Public Defender Adam Page told jurors Aranda found a "Girl's Gone Wild" video while Torres was away and they argued about it.
When Aranda called her mother to pick her up, Page said, Torres begged her to stay, they "kissed and made up" and began playing video games.
The argument heated up again, though, when Aranda demanded Torres' phone, saying she didn't think she'd ever be able to trust him.
When looking through the phone, Aranda found texts between Torres and the other girlfriend, and a downloaded picture of a scantily clad Kim Kardashian.
Aranda punched Torres and he pushed her away, Page said.
When Aranda said, "I wish you were dead and I wish I had my baby with somebody else," Page said, Torres "snapped."
"Before he knows it, he's standing over Ignacia's lifeless body," Page said.
Panic and fear caused Torres to go to the hospital and to pour bleach on the bloody carpet around Aranda's body, Page said.
Torres' mother testified her son told her that the last thing he remembers after Aranda told him she wished someone else had fathered the baby was his head getting "hot and dizzy."
Pima County Superior Court Judge Richard Fields is presiding over the trial.
Contact reporter Kim Smith at 573-4241 or firstname.lastname@example.org