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Death penalty sought in Maricopa couple murders

Posted at 9:11 PM, Jan 20, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-21 07:11:53-05
FLORENCE, Ariz. (AP) - Pinal County's top prosecutor has filed notice that he'll seek the death penalty for the man accused of killing a Maricopa couple last year and burying their bodies.
 
County Attorney Lando Voyles cites multiple aggravating factors in the case against Jose Ignacio Valenzuela.
 
He's facing first-degree murder charges in the deaths of 44-year-old Michael Careccia and his 42-year-old wife, Tina. The couple was reported missing on June 22.
 
Investigators interviewed Valenzuela and say statements he made led them to search his property.
 
Authorities unearthed a 6-foot-deep grave containing the couple's bodies and also reported finding a gun believed to be the murder weapon.
 
County sheriff's officials say Valenzuela admitted to taking methamphetamine before the killings.
 
A call to Valenzuela's public defender wasn't immediately returned Wednesday afternoon.
 
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