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Man pleads guilty to stabbing girlfriend to death, cuts plea deal

A man accused of stabbing his girlfriend to death last year cuts a plea deal.

Corey Franklin allegedly killed his girlfriend at the couple’s home on the 1400 block of Eclipse in Dona Ana in January of 2015.

Friday, Franklin pleaded guilty to murder. As part of that deal, kidnapping and tampering with evidence charges were dropped.

Corey Franklin was facing at least 51 years in prison, but is now only facing 30 years for murder. Prosecutors tell me the family of the victim, Graciela Hernandez, just wants closure.

“It’s been very hard on our family, very, very hard. It’s taken a toll. Our family isn’t the same anymore, it’s not and it never will be,” Hernandez’s aunt Amanda Hernandez said.

It was an emotional day for the family of Graciela Hernandez as the young mother’s murderer, Corey Franklin, appeared in court. Franklin was handcuffed, his head hung low as prosecutors recounted the murder. Prosecutors say Hernandez was stabbed 11 times and beaten with a pot. After the murder, Franklin thought Hernandez was still alive, but left to buy beer before going to police. Prosecutors say he lied and told officers someone broke into the home. He then told investigators he beat Hernandez because she attacked him with a knife.

“You need to know, there is a mandatory 30 year sentence that I will impose,” Judge Fernando Macias said.
The guilty plea he will not face a jury. Instead, Judge Macias will sentence him immediately for the murder.

“With this resolution, there is finality for the family. You don’t have years and years and months of an appeal process,” Prosecutor Gerald Beyers said.

The family tells Abc-7 its what they wanted. They say they miss Hernandez and believe justice has been served.

“She loved her daughter, she loved her family. And for someone just to take that from her…It’s not fair,” Hernandez said.

The mandatory sentence is life or 30 years in prison followed by five years parole. Sentencing will take place Monday.

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