Juan Ignacio Blanco  


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Classification: Murderer
Characteristics: Robbery
Number of victims: 2
Date of murder: August 29, 1990
Date of arrest: December 23, 1992
Date of birth: April 15, 1965
Victims profile: Tomas and Violetta Rodriguez
Method of murder: Stabbing with knife
Location: Dade County, Florida, USA
Status: Sentenced to death on June 19, 1996. Resentenced to death on October 18, 2004

Supreme Court of Florida


opinion SC88638

opinion SC04-2274


DC#  658187
DOB:  04/15/65

Eleventh Judicial Circuit, Dade County Case # 90-36048
Sentencing Judge: The Honorable Norman S. Gerstein
Attorney, Trial: Howard Sohn, Esq. & David Peckins – Assistant Public Defender
Attorney, Retrial: Edward Koch & Alan Greenstein – Assistant Public Defenders
Attorney, Direct Appeal: Roy D. Wesson & Melodee A. Smith – Private

Date of Offense: 08/29/90

Date of Sentence: 06/19/96

Date of Sentence: 10/18/04

Circumstances of Offense:

On the evening of 08/30/90, Marlene McField, a neighbor of Tomas and Violetta Rodriguez, witnessed the Rodriguezes arrive home, and later in the evening, she heard the Rodriguez’s dogs wailing.

The following morning, McField went to the Rodriguezes and noticed that the gate leading to the front porch was ajar and the key was still in the lock on the inside of the gate.  McField rang the doorbell, and when no one responded, she called the police.

The police found the front door unlocked, with no sign of forced entry.  When the police entered the kitchen, they found a bloodstained knife and a pistol on the floor.  A wooden door leading to the garage was cracked in the center and the hinges were broken. 

The body of Tomas Rodriguez was found inside the garage, with bullet and stab wounds.  Violetta Rodriguez’s body was found against the garage wall and had blunt force and stab wounds.

A single set of bloody footprints that did not match either Mr. or Mrs. Rodriguez led from the garage to the kitchen and a single drop of Jesus Delgado’s blood was found in the garage.  A mixture of Delgado’s and the Rodriguez’s blood was found in the garage, on the pistol, and on the kitchen phone.  Delgado’s palm print was found on the phone and the last number dialed from the phone was the residence where Delgado lived at the time.

In June of 1990, the Rodriguezes sold their dry-cleaning business to Horatio Lamellas, whose daughter, Barbara Lamellas, and her boyfriend, Delgado, ran the business.  After the sale, Delgado complained to the Rodriguezes that the machines were not working properly and customers were not satisfied. 

Delgado became a suspect due to the evidence found at the crime scene and the complaints about the dry-cleaning business.  Delgado was not located and arrested until 12/23/92, more than two years after the murders.

Prior Incarceration History in the State of Florida:

Prior to the crime, Delgado had a significant criminal record. 

Trial Summary:

07/27/93 - Indicted as follows:

Count I - First-Degree Murder

Count II - First-Degree Murder

Count III - Armed Burglary

Count IV - Use of a Firearm During a Felony

10/27/95 - Jury returned guilty verdicts on all counts of the indictment.  The State did not prosecute Count IV of the indictment, Use of a Firearm During a Felony.

11/21/95 - Jury recommended a death sentence for Count I by a vote of 7-5, and a death sentence for Count II by a vote of 12-0.

06/19/95 - Sentenced as follows:

Count I - First-Degree Murder – Death

Count II - First-Degree Murder – Death

Count III - Armed Burglary – Life imprisonment

08/24/00 - FSC remanded for retrial

05/26/04 - Jury returned guilty verdicts on the First-Degree Murder counts. The State did not prosecute Count III of the indictment, Armed Burglary.

07/08/04 - Jury recommended death sentences by votes of 9-3.

10/18/04 - Sentenced to death

Case Information:

Delgado filed a Direct Appeal with the Florida Supreme Court on 07/31/96, citing fourteen trial court errors.  On 02/03/00, the FSC ordered one of the death sentences reduced to life imprisonment and affirmed the other death sentence. 

On 08/24/00, the FSC granted a rehearing motion and substituted a new opinion for the original opinion of 02/03/00.  In this opinion, the FSC remanded the case for a new trial. 

The FSC concentrated on one issue, which led to the order for a new trial:  the trial court should have granted a defense motion for judgment of acquittal on the charges of First Degree Murder, due to the fact that the State failed to prove the necessity of the felony murder charge and failed to prove premeditation.

On 10/18/04, Delgado was again sentenced to death.



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