Ex-Sailor Sentenced in 1975 Virginia Murder

By: Virginia AP Email
By: Virginia AP Email

NORFOLK, Va. (AP) -- A former sailor has been sentenced to 20 years in prison for the 1975 slaying of a Virginia man.

A circuit judge in Norfolk sentenced 59-year-old Joel Saenz on Friday.

Thirty-two-year-old Lionel Wayne Baldwin was a part-time cab driver when he was stabbed in the head, chest, neck and arms in his cab.

Saenz was taken into custody in April 2012 by police in Indio, Calif. after police in Norfolk obtained a murder warrant.

The Virginian-Pilot (http://bit.ly/14XiGpt) reports two former shipmates aboard the aircraft carrier Independence came forward last year to clear their consciences and testified that Saenz committed the crime.

Saenz entered an Alford plea to second-degree murder in December. An Alford plea means the defendant doesn't admit guilt but agrees that evidence is strong enough to convict them.

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