There is currently a murder investigation going on near a town I used to live in. I generally do cases here in which have been solved in one form or another and I truly hope one day I will be able to come here with that one. But, the case against Janepsy Carballo has made me think about the new case. In the murder investigation from my old town there is a real fear that vigilante justice may take over and they are having a huge issue with innocent people having their names and pictures spread all over social media due to speculation from people. There seems to be nearly a mob mentality there and I have said often I could see the likes of an 1800's lynching in the process when the perpetrator or perpetrators are caught... I hope I am wrong. In the case of Janepsy Carballo prosecutors claim that she committed murder against a man because she believed he had been behind the killing of her husband just one month earlier and she decided to take justice into her own hands.
On April 20, 2008 Orlando Mesa was in a park just outside his North Miami Florida home holding his twenty month old son when a car pulled up and shot at him. Orlando was killed and his son was grazed by the bullets but would survive. Orlando's wife, Janepsy would announce to the police, family and friends that she believed Orlando's business partner, Illam Nissim was behind the killing. Exactly one month later on May 20th Nissim would be found dead in Janepsy's home with several gunshot wounds to his back.
Janepsy would claim that Nissim had come to her home forcefully and that she believed that he was reaching for a gun when she shot him in her home. Her defense attorney would later attempt to use the “Stand Your Ground” defense but the court had rejected that argument for trial. Investigators would claim that not only did the fact that Nissim was shot in the back indicate that he was turned away from Janepsy and not going towards her proved she was not in danger, they would claim they had proof showing that Janepsy had in fact asked Nissim to come to her home. And yet still it seems it took nearly two years to arrest her.
When she finally would make it to trial in late 2014 the prosecution would argue that Janepsy had asked Nissim to the home on the premises of bringing her “For Sale” signs for her home but once inside she had asked him to move some stereo equipment into another room. They would contend that after this was done Janepsy had opened fire on Nissim. The biggest piece of evidence they had against her was a wire tapped conversation made in 2010 with a confidential informant. In the recording Janepsy would seemingly boast about taking the law into her own hands and say “When I knew it was going to be hard to catch him, I was like, I have to do something. An eye for an eye. I wanted his daughter to grow up without a father, just like my son.”
It appears that Illam Nissim, who as I said was described as a business partner of Orlando Mesa's, was being investigated for his murder. However, it was never made clear if investigators had anything really pointing to him or if he was simply being looked at because Janepsy had mentioned his name. It was also unclear just what sort of business they shared. It was indicated that Orlando was a suspected drug dealer but I could not find much on that issue. Video surveillance had shown two men dressed in black, driving a white Toyota had been the shooters of Orlando. The only other description of the two indicated they had dreadlocks.
Prosecutors would elude to the fact that it was “possible” that Janepsy had been having an ongoing relationship with Nissim prior to her husband's death. They fell short of saying it was an intimate relationship as it seems there was little to prove this. However, their assumption came from multiple phone calls between the two prior to Orlando's death. A cousin of Orlando's would testify that at his funeral Janepsy was adamant that Nissim was involved in the killing and was very angry.
One could almost have sympathy for Janepsy if she truly did believe that Nissim was behind the death of her husband. However, first, taking another life is not justice and secondly she hardly gave the investigators much time to make that connection. I realize that we live in a 24/7 world in which people believe that cases are solved much like the crime dramas on television show us, but that is not reality. To kill Nissim only one month after the death of her husband could have quite possibly caused her husband's murder to never be solved. On top of this if her revenge truly was about his daughter's father the sympathy has to have a line. To add to this not only was her son's father taken but now his mother is too.
It took the jury about sixteen hours to deliberate. A few hours before their ultimate verdict they had indicated that they were deadlocked at 11-1. Eleven wanted 1st degree murder while the hold out was voting for 2nd degree. They would return two hours after the judge asked them to try longer with a verdict of 1st degree murder. The sentence was a mandatory life sentence.
The only record of appeal that I have found was for 2015 when the defense asked for and was denied a new trial.