LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Day one of a sentencing hearing for the man who pleaded guilty to killing a 4-year-old boy in July of 2007 has wrapped up. Although Cecil New pleaded guilty before going to trial, Monday's sentencing played out like a trial, with prosecution witnesses arguing for the death penalty.
One day before his trial was set to begin in October, New pleaded guilty to murder, kidnapping, tampering with physical evidence and unlawful transaction with a minor in connection with the death of 4-year-old Ivan Cano.
During Monday's proceedings, witnesses took the stand to talk about some of the factors the Judge Judith McDonald-Burkman should consider before ruling on whether New will be sent to prison for life or sentenced to death.
On Monday, the judge ruled New's 1992 convictions in the rape and sodomy of his niece and nephew show a substantial history of assaultive behavior.
Cano's mother, Rosalina, went before Judge McDonald-Burkman around 11:30 a.m. When we spoke with her by phone Sunday night, she told us she does not want the death penalty for New because she doesn't want to see another family suffer.
A homicide detective also took the stand to discuss the day in 2007 when Cano's body was found in a garbage truck. The testimony was graphic and emotional, and Cano's parents were in the courtroom listening to all the details. At one point, his dad had to walk out.
The defense will make its case Tuesday morning, and then the judge's sentence is expected.
- Sentencing hearing begins today for convicted sex offender
- Thousands of pages of evidence unsealed in New case
- Cano family reacts to Cecil New guilty plea
- Cecil New pleads guilty in 4-year-old's murder
- Change of venue denied for Cecil New
- Prosecutors: New talked about killing witnesses
- Defense wants New jurors sequestered
- New's lawyers want more statements to police suppressed
- Search dogs hit on locations in and around New's apartment
- New's prior relationships could be presented to jurors