Man sentenced for killing mother, attacking brother

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An El Cajon man who killed his mother and tried to kill his brother in 2015 was sentenced to 24 years to life in state prison on Aug. 8, 2018.

Erik Enrique Margain, 38, said nothing before he was sentenced by El Cajon Superior Court Judge Robert Amador, who ordered him to pay $3,542 in restitution that includes funeral expenses.

Martha Margain-Velarde, 63, was beaten to death in her home in the 1900 block of Hidden Crest Drive in El Cajon around 5 p.m. on May 17, 2015.

An El Cajon man who killed his mother and tried to kill his brother in 2015 was sentenced to 24 years to life in state prison on Aug. 8, 2018.

Erik Enrique Margain, 38, said nothing before he was sentenced by El Cajon Superior Court Judge Robert Amador, who ordered him to pay $3,542 in restitution that includes funeral expenses.

Martha Margain-Velarde, 63, was beaten to death in her home in the 1900 block of Hidden Crest Drive in El Cajon around 5 p.m. on May 17, 2015.

Deputy District Attorney Matthew Carberry said Erik Margain admitted to punching his mother with his fist 62 times. She suffered blunt force trauma to her head, neck, and torso, he said.

Carberry said Margain told authorities he was tired of his mother telling him what to do.

Carberry said Erik Margain knocked on his older brother’s bedroom door. He then choked and kicked Carlos Margain, 40, who escaped out of the window. Carlos Margain had several ribs broken, suffered a collapsed lung, broken orbital eye socket and a broken nose.

Erik Margain pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and attempted murder. Amador imposed 15 years to life for murder and nine years consecutively for attempted murder.

Carberry read the letters of the killer’s two brothers into the record as they were not in court.

“It’s been over three years since the worst day of my life happened – I still remember the vicious attack like it was yesterday,” wrote Carlos Margain as he described “the look of rage on Erik’s face as he relentlessly attacked me.”

“My mother was a social person who had many friends. She was loved by many people, and she had a very positive attitude,” wrote Andres Margain, who is the defendant’s fraternal twin brother. “He’s smarter than you think and knows how to manipulate people to get what he wants.

“Right now, he’s probably acting like the perfect inmate, and not causing trouble with anyone…just biding his time for the day he gets out.

“I hope he sits in his cell till the day he dies. My brother Erik is a danger to himself, myself, to my brother Carlos, and society.”

Amador gave Margain credit for serving 1,179 days in custody including over a year at Patton State Hospital where doctors determined he was mentally competent to stand trial.

He was fined $10,294. He did not want to talk about the crime to an official preparing a sentencing report, but did say he had “made a mistake.” He added that he hoped his brothers could forgive him.

Murder solved 32 years after crime was committed

A sentence of 26 years to life was handed down Aug. 6 in a Lemon Grove homicide that occurred 32 years ago.

The sisters and brother-in-law of the victim, Cyrus Jefferson, 20, spoke before Stacy Littleton, 53, received the maximum sentence from El Cajon Superior Court Judge Lantz Lewis.

Jefferson was found dead on Oct. 11, 1986, in a field in the 2500 block of 69th Street in Lemon Grove by a passerby. He had been stabbed to death.

A jury convicted Littleton of first-degree murder on July 3 after they deliberated for nearly 11 hours over the course of three days. A key piece of evidence was a black glove found near Jefferson’s head which had Littleton’s DNA on it, said Deputy District Attorney Chris Lindberg.

After the victim’s relatives spoke, Littleton said, “I’m sorry for your loss – he was my friend too.”

Littleton was initially suspected in the homicide and was arrested, but he was not charged in court and was released. The sheriff’s cold case homicide unit re-examined the case and Littleton was arrested in June, 2017 after advances in DNA testing linked him to the crime.

Lewis fined him $2,600 and gave him credit for 568 days in jail. He imposed 25 years to life for the murder, plus an additional year for the use of a knife in a homicide.

Littleton and Jefferson were running errands together and had shared a motel room shortly before Jefferson died. The victim’s car with his blood was found in Lemon Grove.

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