Accused rapist and murderer points finger at victim's neighbors - FOX5 Vegas - KVVU

Accused rapist and murderer points finger at victim's neighbors and police

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More than five years later, a man is standing trial accused of the rape and murder of a 10-year-old girl and her mother. (FOX5) More than five years later, a man is standing trial accused of the rape and murder of a 10-year-old girl and her mother. (FOX5)
LAS VEGAS (FOX5) -

More than five years later, a man is standing trial accused for the rape and murder of a 10-year-old girl and her mother.

Bryan Clay was 22 years old when he was arrested. Prosecutors said his two victims, little Karla Martinez and 38-year-old Ignacia "Yadira" Martinez, were bludgeoned to death with a hammer on April 15, 2012 at their home on Robin Street.

Clay told police he doesn't remember anything. That continues to be a key part of his defense.

"If you have all this evidence, I guess I did it," defense attorney Anthony Sgro said, simulating his client. "Lock me up. Put me in jail."

"At one point the detective who's interviewing Mr. Clay starts crying," Sgro continued. "Bryan apologized to the detective."

Police painted a different picture of Clay in 2012, releasing photos of him sticking his tongue out and blowing kisses to the camera while being arrested.

During opening statements, Clay sat with a blank expression on his face, listening to the story of a fourth grader who reported the crime the next day to his teacher.

"The next morning, I woke up and I saw my dad and he had holes in his head, and he was bloody, and he was stumbling around," prosecutor Pam Weckerly said, simulating nine-year-old Christopher Martinez. " I saw my mom had been murdered and I saw my sister -- I went to go tell her -- and I saw she had been murdered as well."

Prosecutors said they found Clay's DNA and fingerprints at the crime scene. The defense argued that the findings were inconclusive and biased. They said now it's time for the public to hear the other side of the story. Sgro called it a story of suspicious neighbors and shoddy police work. 

"We actually have analysts in this case that have made mistakes and gone to their supervisors and said I was stressed out. I was under a lot of pressure. I have a huge backlog and I need to get it done," Sgro said. "I'm going to ask every scientist when they hit the stand, 'What conversations did you have with the state after my opening statement? And what modifications have you made to your testimony?' Because now they know what we're going to hit the analysts with."

Sgro also argued that officers failed to adequately look into the Martinez family's neighbors. He said the night of the attack, father Arturo Martinez got into an argument with the neighbors over a parking dispute that had been going on for years.

FOX5 interviewed a neighbor in 2012 who corroborated that story. The woman, who spoke only in Spanish, said she thought her husband and Arturo Martinez were going to get into a fight over slashed tires. Sgro showed pictures of those tires in court.

"I don't know what a neighborly dispute is, but there was nothing neighborly about what was going on," Sgro said. "You will have to ask yourself, is this a colossal coincidence or is there something here?"

"There isn't one bloody footprint outside the residence. Ask yourself, is that just a coincidence or is that because the neighbor wouldn't have had to wear shoes?" he continued. "Wouldn't have had to wear socks? Wouldn't have had to wear anything if in fact they had anything to do with this."

"This was a pretty extreme neighborly dispute," Weckerly said. "But it really isn't on the scale of a sexual assault and murder of a 10-year-old and a sexual assault and murder of her mother."

Arturo Martinez was also injured in the attack, suffering multiple skull fractures. His two sons, ages nine and four, were not attacked.

Prosecutors said Clay also attacked and sexually assaulted a 50-year-old woman in the same area where the Martinez family lived. Police tracked her stolen phone, which led them to Clay. Defense lawyers say that woman was high on cocaine, is not credible, and identified a different suspect when looking at a police lineup.

The trial is set to continue on Wednesday at noon. 

Stay with FOX5 for continuing coverage of this trial and follow Adam Herbets (@AdamHerbets) on Twitter for live updates inside the courtroom. 

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