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Posted on August 12, 2020 in Criminal Defense

Man Facing Charges in Connection With Niece’s Death, Phoenix Kidnapping

A Phoenix man kidnapped his nieces when he fled in a vehicle with the girls in the back seat. The tragic story began on July 22 at a home on Lewis Avenue in Phoenix. It ended with one teenager dead, one in critical condition, and a man facing four criminal charges.

The suspect, Carlos Eduardo Mora, 27, of Phoenix, and another man drove to a local store to purchase snacks around 6:30 p.m. Mora’s two teenage nieces rode with them in a green Ford Explorer.

According to a statement from the Arizona Department of Public Safety, Mora got into the driver’s seat when the other man went into the house. Mora then sped away with his two nieces still in the vehicle.

The other adult male tried to stop Mora from leaving with the two girls, but Mora used the vehicle to strike him. Family members reported that the girls called them about 6:45 p.m.

The girls were screaming. Family members stated that the girls said Mora was “driving crazy.”

The Girls Were Found on the Side of the Road

Someone called The Arizona Department of Public Safety’s (AZDPS) Operational Communication Center around 9:19 p.m. to report an injured person on the roadside at milepost 116 of westbound US 60. The caller said the person was bleeding from the head.

Troopers responded to the scene and found two teenage females who were later identified as Mora’s nieces. Both girls appeared to have suffered head trauma. Emergency responders pronounced the 13-year-old female dead at the scene.

The 12-year-old female was taken to Banner Thunderbird Hospital. From there, she was transported by air to Phoenix Children’s Hospital in critical condition. Her current condition is unknown.

A Search Begins for the Suspect

State troopers were notified of a man at a local gas station who was wearing a bloody shirt. Troopers went to the Wickenburg Shell gas station. With the assistance of officers from the Wickenburg Police Department, troopers located the man.

The suspect gave false information to the troopers but mentioned that his vehicle was at the nearby Quality Inn. The troopers went to the hotel and located a green Ford Explorer. They located Mora’s wallet inside the vehicle.

Troopers questioned Mora about what had happened. Mora admitted to taking the vehicle. He also admitted to seeing people in the car with him but claimed that he kept swerving until the screaming stopped.

Arrested and Charged with Several Crimes

Mora was arrested and booked into the Maricopa County Jail. He was charged with theft of means of transportation, kidnapping, aggravated assault, and first-degree murder. The Phoenix Police Department and Arizona State Troopers continue to investigate the matter.

Multiple Criminal Charges From One Incident

All four charges against Mora are felony charges. Each charge carries a lengthy prison sentence. Because the crimes involve children, the sentences could be enhanced.

Also, a judge could order that the sentences are to be served consecutively instead of concurrently.

For each guilty verdict, the judge issues a sentence for that charge. Therefore, if a defendant has four guilty verdicts, there will be four separate sentences. If the judge gives the defendant prison time for each charge, the defendant could have four separate prison terms.

The judge can order that the defendant serves the sentences concurrently. That means that the person serves all sentences at the same time. When the longest sentence is complete, the person is released from prison.

If the judge orders that the sentences are served consecutively, the defendant must finish one sentence before beginning the next sentence. For example, if the sentences for the crimes are five years each, the total time spent in prison with consecutive sentences is twenty-five years. With concurrent sentences, the time served would be a total of five years.

Do You Need a Criminal Defense Attorney?

If you are facing criminal charges, you can benefit from talking to a criminal defense lawyer. Having a criminal record can have negative consequences for the rest of your life. However, if you are facing multiple criminal charges, especially felonies, you definitely want to talk to a criminal lawyer.

Convincing a judge to allow you to serve concurrent sentences can be difficult. The judge may consider a variety of factors, such as whether the crimes involved violence or harmed a child. The judge may also consider your prior criminal record when deciding between concurrent and consecutive sentences.

Having an experienced criminal defense lawyer can help. Your lawyer can help you present a strong argument for concurrent sentences. Also, your attorney explains your legal rights and your options to help you understand what you are facing.