Jay O’Neill González Mercado will face trial for the kidnapping and subsequent murder of Rosimar Rodríguez Gómez.
This was determined on Wednesday afternoon by Judge Sylvia Díaz Solla, of the Bayamón Court of First Instance, who indicated the start of the trial for December 16, from 9:00 a.m.
The decision was made after hearing the testimony of Xadiel Cabranes Mojica, to whom González Mercado tried to blame the murder.
Rosimar’s family was in court at the time of the decision. No person related to González Mercado, who has participated in this preliminary hearing process via Zoom, was present.
Previously, Cabranes Mojica testified that some sexual videos that González Mercado allegedly found on the cell phone of his partner, Jonelys Soto Adorno, caused a dispute between them that could have ended with the kidnapping and murder of Rosimar.
During his testimony, the 20-year-old explained that he had known González Mercado since 2012, when they both lived in the same urbanization, and that they used drugs together. It alleged that the defendant used marijuana, Xanax and Tramadol.
Cabranes Mojica affirmed that he shared with his girlfriend, whom he identified as Samantha, and the couple made up of González Mercado and Soto Adorno, whom he said he met in 2017, on several occasions this year.
The most relevant part that the young man detailed in his testimony was that on September 16, the day before Rosimar’s murder, González Mercado wrote him a message on WhatsApp in which he indicated that he wanted to have a conversation with him. In that message, the phrase “la pu… esta” stood out.
“I was guiding there and I received a call from Jay that he had found some sex videos of Jonelys,” he said in his testimony.
“I get a call. I put it on ‘speaker’, because I’m guiding. Jay in a tearful voice tells me that he feels like sh … He’s like tearful. He tells me that he feels shit … for having given him his trust. She starts crying and says ‘you’ll see’ and the call hooks me, ”added the witness, amid several interruptions due to differences between the prosecutors – Lizette Sánchez Vázquez, Gretchen Pérez Catinchi and Jessika Correa- with the defendant’s lawyer, Manuel Morales Schmidt.
The testimony, despite the interruptions, revealed that González Mercado’s discomfort was because the defendant allegedly told him “I found some videos…… this one (she doesn’t say a name). I feel shit … for having given him my confidence ”.
These expressions were heard in the room by Rosimar’s mother, Rosa Gómez Ortiz, and her father, Roberto Rodríguez Negrón. There was also his aunt, Marangelí Gómez Ortiz, and an uncle who was not identified.
In his testimony, Cabranes Mojica reported that he recommended González Mercado to “take things easy.” He said the reply he received was a cartoon with a broken heart.
He immediately commented that he wrote to Soto Adorno to see if he was okay.
“She proceeds to tell me what happened,” he stated.
However, the explanation was not publicly disclosed, as the lawyer successfully objected that nothing of what Soto Adorno wrote or said could be indicated.
The witness continued to answer questions from the prosecutor Correa, in which he revealed that on the afternoon and night of September 17, the day Rosimar was kidnapped, he was with his girlfriend Samantha at his mother’s house and that they went to eat sushi.
The defendant, however, stipulated in his affidavit that he was with Cabranes Mojica that night and that it was Cabranes Mojica who killed Rosimar with two shots. But, during the hearing it emerged that the autopsy revealed that the body had about 15 detonations.
Likewise, the agent who investigated the case, Jesus Alicea Ortiz, reported during the judicial process that there is evidence that locates the witness in the places he reported during the hours of the crime. For example, there are videos of the place where you went to eat with your partner.
On the other hand, Cabranes Mojica said that it was when he was with his partner in the car talking that September 17 that he learned through a post on Facebook that Rosimar and Soto Adorno were missing.
He explained that he tried to get Soto Adorno through messages on his cell phone, but that it was not until September 18 at around 7:00 pm that she replied to him on Messenger.
He said that on September 20 he saw a Facebook Live of the moment when agent Wilson Cordero interviewed Soto Adorno about the Rosimar case.
“I heard various things. I know that she lied, because she had told me (about the Rosimar case), ”he said.
“We had already had a conversation and he told me about Jay and Rosimar what happened, how he lost his phone,” he said in another instance.
The young man tried to stipulate in several instances that he always thought that González Mercado was involved in Rosimar’s disappearance and death. But, due to objections of the lawyer, his testimony on the matter was not allowed.
At the end of the morning hearing, Cabranes Mojica revealed that from the first day the Police interviewed him, on September 22, he handed over his cell phone to the Police. This mobile is supposed to contain the evidence of the conversations he had with González Mercado and Soto Adorno regarding the crime.
Prosecutor Pérez Catinchi reported that its content will not be used as evidence in this preliminary hearing. It would be revealed at the trial.
The hearing was recessed until 2:00 pm, when the defendant’s attorney will cross-examine the witness.
Upon his departure, Morales Schmidt indicated that “it has not been contemplated” to stipulate any defense of mental insanity for González Mercado or to reach an agreement with the Prosecutor’s Office to plead guilty to the evidence that has been passed so far.
Meanwhile, the prosecutor Pérez Catinchi explained to the press that they do not have to have a testimony that stipulates that González Mercado shot Rosimar.
“If two people are in concert and in common agreement and kidnap a person and culminate in the murder of a person, that is called in concert and common agreement”, so it is a murder in the first degree, he explained.
Then, he explained that “allegedly, Jay’s testimony is that he is upset and that he calls Xadiel, they have already seen that it is not correct, and that he tells him that he is upset, that he is going to look for him and that in the car they decide, supposedly , give (Rosimar) a scare and they go and kidnap her. What evidence is clear? That Jay did arrive in his car and they kidnapped her. Xadiel was not there. The same one who gets there is Jay, the one who has reasons because he’s upset is Jay… That’s the proof ”.
Rosimar, 20, was kidnapped near her residence, in the Sabana Seca neighborhood of Toa Baja, on September 17 at 9:22 p.m. Her body was found on September 27 in a spot on the PR-167 highway of Golden.
The investigation pointed out that González Mercado, in mutual and common agreement with other individuals, tricked her into sending him a text message with her location. It was then that he came to the Sabana Seca neighborhood and allegedly kidnapped her. They escaped in a white Suzuki SX-4 vehicle.
González Mercado was charged on October 15 with five charges for the Rosimar crime. These are one for first degree murder, one count for kidnapping, two counts for violation of the Gun Law, and one count for providing false information to authorities.