EL PASO — It was a moment that seemed to come more from a movie script than from a real courtroom: a murder defendant arguing aloud with his own lawyer, and then interrupting the judge who tries to intervene.
Brian Engleton is on trial for the June 16, 2011 stabbing death of his wife Deidre. She died from stab wounds that she suffered outside the beauty salon where she worked on Antonio in Northeast El Paso. Today, as one eyewitness told the court he saw Engleton standing over her holding a bloody knife, Engleton startled the courtroom by verbally challenging his own defense lawyer, Frank Macias. "You're leading him into questions," Engleton snapped. "It's my fate, isn't it?"
Then, with the jury still present, Judge Maria Salas-Mendoza cautioned Engleton that by speaking, he risked forfeiting some of his Constitutional rights. Engleton then interrupted her, and as Macias stepped a few feet to his right to restrain Engleton, the defendant told his lawyer, "I want to talk to you in the back."
The trial continues Tuesday morning on the sixth floor of the County Courthouse.