Death penalty for Brownsville man

Manuel Velez during the trial.

It didn TMt take jurors very long to decide on a sentence for Manuel Velez.

The 43-year-old Brownsville man was convicted in the death of 1-year-old Angel Moreno last week.

Jurors started deliberations around 3 p.m. Friday and emerged two hours later with their sentence: the death penalty.

Cameron County First Assistant District Attorney Chuck Mattingly believes the jury made the right decision.

"They took their job very seriously," he said. "They asked to review the evidence after they were sent back to deliberate. They took their time with it.

State District Judge Able Limas did not allow full use of Velez TMs past criminal history but Mattingly said prosecutors brought most of Velez's past to light.

"We were able to present his criminal history punishment, called witness on future danger," he said. "Another witness form Wisconsin who had arrested him for aggravated battery."

The sentencing interrupted by numerous outbursts in the courtroom prompting heightened security.

Judge Limas sent Velez TMs brother out of the courtroom in handcuffs earlier in the week for allegedly making threats.

Velez's mother and urrent wife were visibly upset and agitated, but Velez remained stoic during the proceedings.