Jury selection begins in teen’s trial for Wake County double murder

Isrrael Vasquez in court.

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — Jury selection began on Monday for the second trial in a Garner murder case from 2013.

Jonathan Santillan
Jonathan Santillan

Isrrael Vasquez, now 19, is facing first-degree murder, conspiracy and other charges in the death of Maria and Jose Mendoza.

Deputies said in the past the two were the unintended victims of a gang dispute. They believed a high-ranking gang member used to live at the residence.

In 2015, Jonathan Santillan, the 19-year-old nephew of Vasquez, was sentenced to life in prison without parole for his role in the murder.

Documents show Jose Mendoza was shot 16 times in the head, chest and torso. Maria Mendoza was shot seven times in the back, lower abdomen and legs.

One of the couple’s children, who was 3-years-old at the time, was unharmed in the shooting.

The Wake County District Attorney’s Office anticipates starting to present evidence in Vazquez’s trial on Wednesday.

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