Note: Stream may contain graphic and disturbing content regarding the case. Stream may also cut in and out due to connectivity issues.
NEW MEXICO (KRQE) – The trial for a man accused of raping and killing a six-year-old Rio Rancho girl continues Friday. KRQE will live stream the trial on this page.
On Wednesday, prosecutors said DNA evidence proves Leland Hust murdered Ariana Jade Romeo. The defense says police forced Hust to believe he had committed the crime. The girls mother, Stephanie Romeo, was the first to testify Wednesday and recalled the moment she found her daughter’s body. Ariana’s body was found August 2018, naked from the waist down and bloody in the Rio Rancho home she shared with her mother, Hust and at least six other people.
Wednesday in court prosecutors showed the girl’s lifeless body when police arrived. Rio Rancho police took DNA from everyone in the home at the time. Hust, who was 21, was then arrested after police say DNA found on the girl’s body matched his. They say he was also the last person to see the girl alive.
The judge expects the trial to last seven to ten days.