| ASU |

Joseluis Marquez Sentenced to Life in Prison for 2010 Murder of ASU Student Kyleigh Sousa

Keep New Times Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Phoenix and help keep the future of New Times free.

Joseluis Marquez was sentenced to life in prison, plus a few extra years, for the 2010 robbery and murder of 21-year-old Arizona State University student Kyleigh Sousa.

Sousa was dragged by a car in an attempted robbery of her purse in an IHOP parking lot just south of the University's Tempe campus on May 26, 2010. She later died from her injuries.

See also:
-Joseluis Marquez Found Guilty of Murder
-Joseluis Marquez's Plea Attempt Rejected
-Kyleigh Sousa Murder: Suspect Arrested
-Mother of ASU Student Killed in Robbery Tells New Times "We Did Everything Right"
-ASU Girl Dragged by Car During Robbery Attempt Dies From Injuries

We're checking with the Maricopa County Attorney's Office on this, but it appears that Marquez will be eligible for early release after serving 25 years in prison.

The County Attorney's Office made the following note after Marquez's conviction in October:

Under Arizona's Felony Murder statute, Marquez faces a possible sentence of natural life in prison for causing the death of an individual while committing or fleeing a felony offense, specifically, robbery. The law was amended on August 2nd, 2012 to eliminate the possibility of early release. Defendants convicted of crimes that occurred before that date may be eligible for release after serving 25 calendar years in prison.

Marquez's crime occurred in 2010, so it seems like he'd be eligible after 25 years.

Marquez was 20 years old at the time of Sousa's death, and he was arrested more than six months later, in December, 2010.

Marquez's lawyer offered prosecutors a plea deal in which Marquez would plead guilty to one count of manslaughter, and give him a prison sentence between 13.5 and 18 years. A spokesman for MCAO told New Times in March that prosecutors didn't even counter that proposal.

Marquez helped the cops catch him by getting a photo-radar ticket a couple weeks before Sousa's death, driving the same rental car he was allegedly driving during the botched robbery.

According to court documents, once police found out who the other occupants of the vehicle were, they told the cops Marquez was the driver and the person who grabbed Kyleigh's purse, leading to her death.

Police first contacted Marquez nearly a month before his arrest -- when he provided police with a story that later proved to be false, according to the cops -- but he would eventually be arrested after police tracked down the rental car.

On top of the 25-to-life sentence for first-degree murder, Judge Edward Bassett also sentenced Marquez to 2 1/2 years on the robbery charge.

Keep Phoenix New Times Free... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Phoenix with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Phoenix.


Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Phoenix.