Dallas man sentenced to life in prison for murdering his neighbor

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by JENNY DOREN

WFAA

Posted on June 20, 2014 at 8:18 PM

DALLAS – It was a tiring and emotional day in a Dallas County courtroom Friday as a family fought to get one man locked up for life.

Randy Torres was a teenager when he brutally murdered his 55-year-old neighbor on July 30, 2010.  Cathy Wilder went to his house to pray with him.

Torres, now 23, was sentenced to life in prison. He pleaded guilty to killing Wilder last month.

Judge Mark Stoltz said Torres should never be freed on parole.

"I want him to be able to get life in prison,” said Virginia Wilder, the victim’s sister.  “I want him never to be able to kill again,” she continued, as tears dripped down her face.

It’s been four summers since her older sister was stabbed to death 33 times, but the emotional wounds are still raw.

"I'm thinking how he brutally butchered my sister,” she said.

Torres was 19 years old when he invited Cathy Wilder over to his trailer home for bible study.

He asked her to pray with him and then went on a violent attack. He stabbed her all over her body and took a butcher knife to her head.

"I've seen a lot of gory stuff, but this is the one that bothered me the most,” said Dallas Police Officer Sean Moses during his testimony.

He said he’s still haunted by the crime scene four summers ago in the 200 block of Walraven Lane near Love Field.

"I was looking at a lady in a massive pool of blood with a knife through her head," he recalls.

He also found a note on her back with the words “Satan’s son.” Shortly after the killing, police responded to a call at Strokers Bar.

"Randy came up and asked if he could use my cell phone,” said Reagan Worling on the witness stand. “He wanted to report a murder."

Torres turned himself into police that night.

His mother, Maria Vasquez, testified, too. She said since her son has been getting mental health treatment while behind bars, he’s changed.

"I see a totally different person after all this medication he's taking," she said.

"This is somewhat of, in my opinion, a systemic failure because intervention could have been taken and we in all probability would not be here today,” said clinical psychologist Kristi Compton.

The victim’s family said no amount of treatment can truly change Torres, and it’s time this horrific chapter in their lives finally come to an end.

E-mail jdoren@wfaa.com

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