Man pleads responsible in Logan Heights home fireplace that killed his dad and mom, sister


A person accused of setting a home fireplace that killed his dad and mom and sister on the household’s Logan Heights residence has pleaded responsible to second-degree homicide.

Wilber Romero, 29, pleaded responsible final week to the October 2019 deaths of his father, Jose Antonio Romero, 44; his mom, Nicalasa “Nico” Maya-Romero, 46; and his 21-year-old sister, Iris Romero. The defendant is predicted to be sentenced subsequent month to 45 years to life in jail.

His father was discovered useless inside the house on Clay Avenue close to thirty second Avenue. His mom and sister died at a hospital.

His different sister and his youthful brother have been injured within the pre-dawn fireplace. Bystanders pulled the sister out of the house, whereas the brother escaped by a window.

Prosecutors mentioned Wilber Romero began the hearth at about 4:30 a.m. on Oct. 19, 2019, then slipped out of a aspect door with the household canine. He escaped the hearth unhurt.

He was arrested and booked into county jail on suspicion of homicide 5 days later.

Earlier than his arrest, Romero appeared in native tv information interviews, throughout which he denied involvement with the hearth and claimed he tried to avoid wasting his household, however was pressured to avoid wasting himself.

In keeping with testimony at a court docket listening to in 2020, investigators mentioned the hearth originated within the defendant’s mattress within the southeast part of the house.

Police witnesses testified that in response to the surviving relations, Romero had a historical past of setting fireplace to parts of the house or objects surrounding the residence. In keeping with a detective, Romero’s brother mentioned the defendant had beforehand talked about “burning the home down and burning all people in it.”

San Diego police Detective Marco Perez testified that he spoke at a hospital with Romero’s sister who survived that fireplace, and he or she advised him she noticed her brother outdoors the house operating backwards and forwards on the street yelling at her to open the door.

Perez mentioned the sister advised him that she screamed for him to assist her and he “ignored her’’ and ran down the road towards a close-by park.

Romero’s protection legal professional, Neil Besse, argued the proof failed to indicate that Romero had set the hearth. The legal professional argued it might need been brought on by different sources, akin to a battery investigators discovered on the defendant’s mattress.

Besse additionally argued there have been statements from neighbors suggesting Romero was seen outdoors the burning residence making an attempt to place out the blaze with a hose.

Supply hyperlink