Testimony in the murder trial of Justin Wayne Green turned personal in the 97th District Court on Thursday when Stephanie Leeann Corral, an alleged co-conspirator in covering up the death of Jose Ramirez, took the stand.
Corral, 26, of Wichita Falls, described in detail her contact with Green in the months following the death of Ramirez, whom Green killed at a Petrolia residence in 2007. The exact date of Ramirez’s death is unknown. His remains were discovered Feb. 8, 2012, by investigators acting on a tip.
Corral, Brittany Green and Terri Green have been indicted on charges of tampering with physical evidence, a second-degree felony, in relation to the death of Ramirez.
Defense Attorney Dustin Nimz maintains Green, 31, killed Ramirez, 23, in self-defense after the El Centro, Calif., man tried to shoot him.
Corral testified that she has known Justin Green’s sister, Brittany Green, since October 2005, and met Justin in 2007 after he was discharged from the army, and had helped his sister and mother, Terri Green, move Justin back to Petrolia from Fort Sill, Okla. It was at Fort Sill that she first saw Ramirez.
Ramirez was discharged at about the same time, and later came to live with Justin Green and Terri Green at a home in the 1700 block of FM 2332, south of Petrolia.
In early August, said Corral in her testimony, Justin Green came to the Wichita Falls apartment of Brittany Green and asked if she or Corral knew where he could get concrete. Corral, who was present at the apartment, noted that green was dirty and had dirt on his clothes and boots.
“(He) had a crazy look on his face,” said Corral. “We thought he was joking.”
Corral said that she and Brittany Green were contacted a few days later by Terri Green, Justin and Brittany Green’s mother, and asked to come to their house on FM 2332, south of Petrolia. Corral said that when they arrived, Justin Green told them that Ramirez “was not here anymore,” but did not give further explanation.
Two weeks later, Green again came to the apartment, this time to tell Corral and Brittany that Ramirez is dead, said Corral.
Corral testified that Justin Green told her that on the morning of the shooting, he backed his pickup into the garage and went inside the house to confront Ramirez. He brought a gun with him. According to Corral’s testimony, Justin Green entered Ramirez’s bedroom and shot him. Ramirez grabbed a gun and Green shot him again.
Investigators found three bullet holes in the wall of Ramirez’s bedroom farthest from the door.
Corral said that Justin Green had talked about not having money, and had joked about killing Ramirez before, while drunk. Corral was questioned about her knowledge of Ramirez’s personal finances.
“He bought his own dope. He had money,” said Corral.
Evidence submitted to the court indicates that a debit card issued to Ramirez for a savings account at the Fort Sill National Bank was used for purchases and withdrawals until September 2007, several months after Ramirez was killed. Bank records also indicated a request for a PIN number to the card dated Sept. 10, 2007.
Corral admitted on the stand to signing for the purchase of a pizza using Ramirez’s debit card.
According to testimony by a bank employee, in July 2007, the account had a balance of $9,134. By September 2007, the account had been overdrawn $85.76.
After shooting Ramirez, Justin Green tied a rope around the body and drug it through the house and into the garage, where he loaded it into his pickup, said Corral.
Corral testified that while visiting the family in the months afterward, Justin Green had pointed out the place were Ramirez was buried, and had threatened to kill her if she told anyone. She stated that she did not at any time see the body of Ramirez.
Testimony in the trial will continue at 9 a.m. Friday.