BERNALILLO, N.M. (KRQE) - A key witness in the Levi Chavez murder trial testified about a possible motive Chavez would've had for killing his wife.
Rose Slama took the stand Thursday, one of Levi Chavez's mistresses who was getting her hair cut by his wife Tera at the same time.
Slama says Tera told her something big about a truck Levi reported stolen.
"I had asked her about the truck situation and she told me that Levi had had it stolen for insurance purposes," Slama said.
Slama then said she asked Levi about what his wife had told her.
"He told me that she didn't know what she was talking about," Slama said.
Within a month of that alleged conversation, Tera was dead, shot once in the head in the couple's Los Lunas home with her husband's APD-issued gun in what investigators initially believed was a suicide.
Defense attorney David Serna tore into Slama on cross-examination, pointing out a string of pending felony charges against her, implying that the DA had given her a deal to testifty against Chavez, something she and prosecutors deny.
Serna also went after Slama's credibility, accusing her multiple times of lying to investigators and not keeping her story straight.
Slama followed another contentious cross-examination between Serna and former Valencia County Sheriff's detective Aaron Jones, the lead investigator to took the apparent suicide and pursued it as a murder investigation.
Serna called Jones a dirty, dishonest cop during opening statements and tried to prove it, which led to testy exchanges between the two.
Serna: You're a world-class detective. You think you are, right?
Jones: Well, some days I am just like some days you're probably a world-class attorney.
At one point District Judge George Eichwald told Jones another outburst and he would be held in contempt.
Serna pressed Jones on that testimony saying he mischaracterized what Chavez told dispatchers.
He then questioned Jones' interview tactics with witnesses asking him why he felt the need to lie to some of them especially to Deborah Romero, the woman Chavez claims he was with when Tera died.
Serna said Jones fed Romero things to get her angry with Levi so she might turn on him.
After more nasty exchanges Eichwald excused the jury for lunch then chastised everyone--the defense, the state and Jones--for their behavior.
"This is a very serious matter for all sides, and I intend to keep it serious," Eichwald said.
There have always been questions about Chavez's whereabouts during the time span Tera may have died.
Court documents show he was unaccounted for at work that Saturday night. He claims he discovered Tera's body the next night.
Everybody loves those holiday lights and displays, but if you're not careful they can quickly turn into a Christmas disaster.
Thriftown is helping you get crafty with your gifts for the holidays all while saving you a lot of money.
Joining us is Ann Merrick, the general manager from Great Harvest Bread to talk about gluten-free items hand-baked-from-scratch holiday breads and sweets.