Suspects in Port Isabel murder plead not guilty

Murder Investigation
MGN Online

Two Los Fresnos residents arrested and charged with allegedly stabbing a man to death in Laguna Heights in October were arraigned in Brownsville this week.

Gloria Ruelas Sanchez, 29 and Nelson Orona Santiago, 40, were charged with intentionally and knowingly causing the death of Miguel Angel Aguilera Orduna by stabbing him with a knife in an indictment handed down by a grand jury on Dec. 18, 2019.

The two defendants appeared for arraignment behind closed doors on Wednesday afternoon. Arraignment waivers uploaded into each case file showed that Sanchez and Santiago pleaded not guilty to the murder charge.

Santiago’s trial has been scheduled for Feb. 17. Sanchez will go to trial the following month, on March 23.

Court records showed that the alleged murder took place on Oct. 6. Both case filings indicated that Sanchez and Santiago were arrested on Oct. 16. Bond was set at $1 million.

Reports from the time of the incident indicated that a man named Miguel Angel Aguilera Orduna was found dead in his residence at 110 Garfield Street in Laguna Heights by a neighbor.

The Port Isabel Police Department found Aguilera’s body just before 4 a.m. with defense wounds across one of his arms and severe lacerations on his neck, according to information given to the press by Port Isabel Police Chief Robert Lopez in October.

Lopez told reporters at the time that a suspect knocked on Aguilera’s trailer door after 3 a.m. The two men allegedly spoke before a fight broke out, according to statements given to the Port Isabel-South Padre Press.