Las Cruces man pleads guilty to murder in girlfriend’s death

Judges gavel

LAS CRUCES, N.M. (AP) – A Las Cruces man accused of fatally stabbing and beating his girlfriend is facing life in prison after pleading guilty to first-degree murder.

Prosecutors say 24-year-old Corey Franklin entered his plea Friday. He’s scheduled to be sentenced on May 2.

Authorities say 24-year-old Graciela Hernandez was stabbed 11 times after a dispute with Franklin last January outside a home north of Las Cruces.

Franklin allegedly dragged Hernandez’s body into the house, placed her on a bed, covered her with blankets and left to go buy more alcohol.

Under New Mexico law, a life sentence means the defendant will spend a mandatory 30 years behind bars before being eligible for parole.

In exchange for Franklin pleading guilty to first-degree murder, prosecutors agreed to drop counts of kidnapping and tampering with evidence.

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