Sentencing delayed in Joliet slaying
By BRIAN STANLEY email@example.com June 15, 2012 3:34PM
Updated: July 18, 2012 6:35AM
JOLIET — A 22-year-old man will wait another week to learn his sentence for the murder he committed four years ago.
On April 16, 2008, fellow gang members visited Daniel I. Huizar at Subway near Cass and Collins streets where he was working. When a rival gang arrived and a fight ensued, Huizar ran from behind the counter to the parking lot where he fired several rounds from a handgun at them.
Huizar missed his targets and killed Alredo Lopez, 40, who was walking his then 8- and 11-year-old sons through the adjacent Walgreens parking lot to buy school supplies.
Huizar was found guilty of first-degree murder and aggravated discharge of a firearm during a bench trial in March 2011. He faces 45 years to life in prison.
Post-trial motions have delayed Huizar’s sentencing, but Judge Amy Bertani-Tomczak silently read a victim impact statement Lopez’s wife, Araceli, submitted in court Friday.
“When my daughter asks me ‘Mom, why don’t I have a dad?’... When I walk into my house and I can’t see him and can’t hear his laugh is when I think that the (worst) nightmare will never end,” Araceli Lopez wrote.
Huizar’s mother, Ynez Hernandez, testified for the defense.
The Air Force sergeant said her son spent much of his childhood living with her in Omaha and Colorado Springs, but returned to Joliet less than a year before the murder.
“He wanted to go back to his father, but that didn’t (work out). He was living in his car at the time,” she said.
Hernandez said her son also didn’t like school and was once suspended for bringing a knife.
Bertani-Tomczak granted the defense’s request to get copies of recordings of phone calls made during the shooting that she had been asked to review.
The sentencing is scheduled to resume June 22.