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Guilty verdict in Metrolink trial

June 26, 2008 12:00:00 AM PDT
A Los Angeles jury convicted a man of 11 counts of first-degree murder for causing a 2005 commuter train derailment, and also found true a special circumstance of multiple murder.Attorneys in Juan Manuel Alvarez's murder trial met with a judge Thursday to discuss a special request from the jury to visit five sites connected with the case.

Normally a jury will ask for field trips during the actual trial, but in this case jurors had been deliberating.

However, jurors withdrew their request Thursday afternoon and instead delivered the verdict.

The jury also convicted 29-year-old Alvarez of one count of arson, but acquitted him of a count called train wrecking.

The 29-year-old former Compton resident is accused of parking his Jeep on the train tracks in Glendale on Jan. 26, 2005. Eleven people died when a Metrolink crashed into the parked vehicle.

Alvarez has always maintained he was trying to take his own life, but then had a change of heart and couldn't get his vehicle off the tracks in time.

Jurors didn't agree.

Alvarez could face the death penalty, and jurors were ordered to return for the penalty phase on July 7.

ABC7 Eyewitness News reporter John Gregory and the Associated Press contributed to this report.

 

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