RIVERSIDE (CBSLA) — A Long Beach man was sentenced to death Friday for the 2010 murder of 17-year-old Norma Lopez in Moreno Valley.
Jesse Perez Torres, 44, was found guilty of first-degree murder last year, and jurors found the circumstance of murder during a kidnapping to be true. A week later, the same jury sentenced Torres to death.READ MORE: Person Critically Injured In Shooting By School Security Officer
Judge Bernard Schwartz on Friday affirmed the jury’s decision and sentenced Torres to death.
Norma Lopez was kidnapped on July 15, 2010 as she walked to a friend’s house from summer school at Valley View High School in Moreno Valley. Her body was found five days later in a nearby dirt field about three miles away.READ MORE: Some Calif. Residents Face Losing Fire Protection Insurance After Moratorium Protecting Them Expired
Torres, who lived in the neighborhood where the murder and kidnapping happened, was linked to the crime by DNA.
At the sentencing hearing, Norma’s sister read a statement from their mother.MORE NEWS: LA County Reports 5 New COVID-19 Deaths; Hospitalizations Hold Steady
“I took Norma to school that day not knowing it was the last time I will ever see her again,” the letter said. “That’s the day this nightmare started. Without Norma, my house was filled with pain and sadness.”