Agents of the Guardia Civil escort the prisoner out of the area where the crime took place. :: ÑITO SALAS
The shouts could be heard from the early hours. Accompanying them were loud blows, the sound of furniture being dragged across the floor and the sobbing of a woman. At 10.50 on Friday 8th August, a call, made by a neighbour who had heard the commotion, alerted the Guardia Civil who wasted no time in arriving at the scene. Having had to enter the house through a window, one of the agents discovered the body of victim Ana María Márquez (37). Her throat had been slit and she had been viciously attacked. Miraculously Ana was still alive and the agent tried to apply pressure to her wounds. But his efforts were in vain as she died before medics were able to come to her aid.
Ana María, from Cordoba, was a brilliant professional and director of Nerja’s History Museum. Now she is the third fatal victimsof domestic violence in Malaga in the past year, and the second in just 10 days, following the attack on Veronica Frias at the hand of her ex-partner. Ana María’s partner Francisco Miguel Martínez (41), also from Cordoba, has confessed to the crime, but maintains that it was an act of “self defence”.
A blow to the head
The autopsy of Ana María Márquez, which took almost six hours to complete, reveals that the she was the victim of a particularly brutal attack. From the first external examination of the body it seemed she had been stabbed around 20 times, however investigators have counted a total of 70 stab wounds, all from the same kitchen knife with a blade measuring 30 centimetres.
Further forensic examination, which was carried out by the Judicial Police in charge of this case, revealed that the victim had also suffered various beatings. These included an overpowering blow to the head that is suspected to have been caused using a bottle of red wine, which investigators found in the bedroom of the home in the Señorío del Mar development, in the Conejito neighbourhood.
As well as the wounds relating to this attack, investigators also discovered other injuries and bruising from previous acts of aggression. From these findings, it seems the woman could have been a victim of habitual abuse, though this was never reported.
However, this is not the first conviction of its type for Martínez. In 2005, his ex-wife reported him for maltreatment and threatening behaviour. Now he faces another charge. However this time the Torrox courts remanded him in prison without bail. Sources at the Andalusian Supreme Court (TSJA) explained that the aggressor was charged with manslaughter and habitual maltreatment. The prosecution wanted the charge to be murder, but the judge, for the moment, has left it as manslaughter , stating “the sentence could be increased when we receive the final autopsy report”.
In his statement, Martínez confessed that he had previously beaten his partner “a couple of times”, but refused to answer further questions.
The Junta de Andalucía now seeks to collaborate with the central government’s delegate in Andalucía, Carmen Crespo, to “maximise the measures needed to be taken to eradicate this grave social problem.”