A New Jersey man who said he was high on drugs and hearing voices when he fatally beat an elderly man with a sauce pan was found guilty of murder.
The Record reported that a Bergen County jury deliberated for about 90 minutes Tuesday before convicting 22-year-old Edwin Estrada, of Cliffside Park.
The military high school dropout, who showed no emotion as the foreman announced the verdict, also was found guilty of weapons offenses, burglary, robbery and credit-card theft charges.
Prosecutors said Estrada attacked and robbed 88-year-old Vincent Leuzzi in the victim's Fairview home in July 2010.
According to The Record, Estrada said he smoked marijuana and PCP, a hallucinogen, in Leuzzi’s bathroom, where he became paranoid. Fearing the elderly man might have a gun, the 22-year-old said he grabbed a pot from the kitchen and began hitting him.
Leuzzi died nine days later of blunt force trauma caused by at least nine blows.
Estrada claimed he was not legally responsible for the murder because he was high on drugs and was urged on by the voice of the devil.
After the hearing, Leuzzi’s stepdaughter Filomena Mazzone, expressed her gratitude for the “jury’s quest for justice,” The Record reported.
“Vincent was a kind, loving man and should not have died in such a violent manner,” she said. “We’ll miss him for the rest of our lives.”
Estrada faces a minimum of 30 years and a maximum of life in prison.