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The victims were both found battered to death in their bedrooms in January 2014.
By Forum Staff
A 48-year-old East Elmhurst man has been convicted in the vicious hammer beating deaths of his girlfriend and her daughter, who were found battered to death in their bedrooms in January 2014.
Carlos Alberto Amarillo, 48, of 87th Street in the East Elmhurst section claimed the two victims were witches and they had been casting voodoo spells on him.
Amarillo was convicted of two counts of first-degree murder, fourth-degree criminal possession of a weapon and endangering the welfare of a child. He will be sentenced on July 6, 2017 an is facing life imprisonment with no possibility of parole.
According to trial records, police responded to an address in East Elmhurst following a 911 call at approximately 12:10 a.m. on January 29th, 2014. Upon entering the front bedroom, police found Estrella Castaneda, 56, face up on the bed with a pillow over her face, blood seeped into the linen and splattered on the wall behind her. The rubber grip of a hammer was beside her body on the bed. The police also found the deceased body of Lina Castaneda, 25, on the floor of a rear bedroom. She was face down with injuries to her head and a hammer was on the floor beside her. Her daughter was found unharmed on the bed in her mother’s room.
Following the violent rampage, Amarillo called 911 telling the operator, “two females are dead, they were assassinated, hurry they are dead. I killed them because they are witches, I want the police to kill me. I killed them with a hammer.”
When police arrived, Amarillo was holding a Bible and walking from the doorway of the home’s entrance to the street. In his statements to police, Flores stated that the women were “witches and were performing voodoo and casting spells” on him that made him sick.
“Acting in a violent rage, the defendant fatally beat to death his girlfriend and her daughter – who was the mother of a young child who also happened to be in the residence that night,” said DA Brown. “Thankfully, the little girl, just seven years old at the time, was not harmed during these deadly attacks. She will, however, be forever impacted by the absence of both her mother and grandmother in her life. At trial, the jury weighed all the evidence and found the defendant guilty of both homicides. The defendant now faces the prospect of spending the rest of his days locked behind bars.”