Righetti's sister asks jury to spare her brother from execution - FOX5 Vegas - KVVU

Righetti's sister asks jury to spare her brother from execution in emotional plea

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Javier Righetti sits in court during his capital murder trial on March 10, 2017. (FOX5) Javier Righetti sits in court during his capital murder trial on March 10, 2017. (FOX5)
LAS VEGAS (FOX5) -

Six years after Alyssa Otremba's death, someone is held responsible.

Javier Righetti was convicted of raping and killing Alyssa Otremba and now his fate is in the hands of the jury.

On Monday, the Otremba family packed the courtroom to sit in on day two of the trial's penalty phase. The state called on one of Righetti's cousins, who said she was sexually assaulted by him in June 2011. 

She said the two of them were in Mazatlán, Mexico celebrating his parents' anniversary. One night, they decided to go to the beach after a night out at the clubs, but said that innocent venture turned into a sexual encounter when he forced himself on her.

Prosecutors said an arrest warrant was issued for Righetti in Mexico for that attack, but he left the country and returned to the United States.

After hearing from Righetti's cousin, the defense called Righetti's sister to the stand. She sat in front of a jury to make an emotional plea for her brother's life.

"I can't help but to have an unbreakable bond with him," Righetti's sister Alexia Righetti said. "I know it's hard for people to see that and to maybe relate, but that was my little brother and we stuck it through rough times."

His sister said their father beat and verbally abused them as children. She added that he abused their mother in front of them regularly.

"I would say that my father expected him to be a man," Alexia said. "(He expected men to have) control over women."

Along with his sister, the defense called on several other relatives, who came to support Righetti despite his conviction. One of his uncles even offered an apology to the Otremba family.

"I want to express my deepest sympathy to the family," Righetti's uncle, Oscar Ivarra said. "I know it was horrible."

The defense also brought on a psychology expert to the stand who reviewed Righetti's school record, pointing to his mental stability, but she had never met him before.

Righetti's sister said what her brother did is painful for the entire family, but she believes his life still holds value.

"If there is anyway that we could have any time," Alexia said. "If he gets executed, I don't know how my mom will survive."

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