The wife of a murdered New Hope man has been sentenced to 25 years in Mississippi Department of Corrections, ending a nearly six-year-long homicide case that saw a mother and daughter both sent to prison.
Christina Martinez, 43, pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in September 2019 for the murder of her husband, 40-year-old Manuel Vasquez. Martinez reported Vasquez missing in summer 2015, and that July, investigators discovered his remains on the property of the Windchase Drive home they shared with their three children and Martinez’s mother, Lydia Martinez, 61. Both Christina and Lydia Martinez were arrested for the murder at the time, but a grand jury later that year indicted Lydia only for accessory after the fact.
Circuit Judge Lee Coleman said at the time of Christina Martinez’s 2019 plea that he would wait to sentence her until after prosecutors presented further evidence to a new grand jury, which indicted Lydia Martinez for first-degree murder in November 2019.
Lydia Martinez was found guilty in a jury trial last month and sentenced to life in prison. Christina and Lydia both testified in the trial, each claiming the other was the one to shoot Vasquez. However, both women admitted to helping cover up the murder after the shooting.
State statute dictates the punishment range for second-degree murder is 20 to 40 years in Mississippi Department of Corrections.