Man’s conviction upheld for the killing of longtime girlfriend’s mother

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A state appeals court panel has upheld a man’s conviction for fatally stabbing his longtime girlfriend’s 68-year-old mother when she ordered him to permanently leave the family’s Long Beach apartment.

Luis Antonio Jimenez is serving a 16-year-to-life state prison sentence for the May 21, 2016, killing of Margarita Valdez Castro, who was stabbed 11 times inside the two-bedroom apartment in the 1100 block of Locust Avenue that she and her husband shared with their daughter, her boyfriend and the couple’s three young children.

Jurors found Jimenez, now 37, guilty of second-degree murder, along with finding a knife-use allegation to be true.

Jimenez claimed that Castro tried to stab him with a knife after telling him to vacate the apartment, according to the appellate court panel’s ruling, which was released Wednesday.

After killing Castro, he changed his clothes and went to a school-related workshop for one of his children, with his girlfriend subsequently discovering her mother’s body on the kitchen floor, according to the ruling.

He was arrested the same day by the Long Beach Police Department and has remained behind bars since then.

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