Crime Documentary - The Katie Sepich story

Viewer discretion is advised. Some may find this content disturbing. This is a documentary I found interesting. Gabriel Avila was sentenced to 69 years in prison after pleading guilty Thursday to the 2003 rape and murder of New Mexico State University graduate student Katie Sepich. State District Judge Douglas Driggers ordered Avila , a 27-year-old Mexican national , to serve the sentence after finishing a nine-year sentence he is now serving on an unrelated 2004 conviction for aggravated burglary. The case was the impetus for a new state law requiring many suspects to provide DNA samples to authorities. Public defender Mark Earnest urged Driggers to be lenient and said Avila was remorseful. Avila asked to be able to apologize face-to-face to Sepich's family , something Earnest said was unprecedented in his 14 years as an attorney. District Attorney Susana Martinez argued that Avila waited more than three years after the slaying to confess and did so only when detectives confronted him with DNA evidence. Avila will not be eligible for parole until after serving 30 years for his murder conviction. Katie Sepich , who was 22 and from Carlsbad , was last seen leaving a party for a two-block walk to her home on Las Cruces' east side. Her body was discovered later that day , Aug. 31 , 2003 , at the city's former dump. Avila was not identified as a suspect until mid-December 2006 , when his DNA came up as a match to evidence collected from under Sepich's fingernails and from her body. Avila subsequently confessed that he encountered Sepich as he drove in the Roadrunner Parkway area and almost struck her with his truck as she walked home. Avila said he followed Sepich home and approached her as she tried to get into her rented house through a bedroom window. She had left her keys at the party. Avila said he " lost it , " grabbed Sepich , raped her outside her bedroom window and then strangled her with his hands , Martinez said. Avila then placed Sepich's body in his truck , de