Jury Convicts Guandique Of Murdering Chandra Levy
Chandra Levy’s mother says she’ll always have a broken heart. Almost a decade since her daughter’s murder, the emotional wounds are still raw. But she’s satisfied that jurors made the right decision finding Ingmar Guandique guilty of killing her daughter.
“It makes a difference to find the right person who is responsible for my daughter’s death,” said Susan Levy.
Jurors said there was more than enough evidence, even though there was no DNA, murder weapon or eyewitnesses linking Guandique–an illegal immigrant from El Salvador–to the crime.
A man walking his dog found Levy’s body in Rock Creek Park in northwest Washington DC.
“We did look over everything. That’s why the deliberations took so long,” said juror Susan Kelly.
The case became a national sensation because Levy–a government intern–was having an affair with Congressman Gary Condit from her home district in California. He became the prime suspect in her murder and police were criticized for ignoring other evidence.
The break in the case came when Guandique’s cellmate told investigators that Guandique confessed to killing Levy. Guandique is already serving jail time for two other attacks on women that closely resemble what happened to Chandra Levy.
Condit did testify during the trial but declined to speak about his relationship with Levy.
Jurors said it didn’t matter anyway.
“I don’t know that it was particularly difficult. It was lengthy; we took it very seriously,” said juror Linda Norton.
Levy’s mother called it a miracle, the justice she wanted after so many years of fighting.
“I’m not sure if it’s a sense of peace but I can certainly tell you it ain’t closure,” Levy said.
Guandique faces a maximum sentence of life in prison without parole when he’s sentenced. That’s scheduled for February 11.