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A jury in the Circuit Court for Montgomery County, convicted Wheaton resident Jose Lara-Chacon, 26, of first-degree murder, for the Jan. 22, 2021 death of Dimer Diaz Martinez, 21, late Wednesday evening, according to the Montgomery County State Attorney’s Office. 

The State’s Attorney’s Office stated that Lara-Chacon faces a potential life imprisonment sentence, and that the sentencing hearing is scheduled for 9 a.m. Jan. 27, 2023.

According to a release by the State’s Attorney’s Office, the incident took place, in an apartment along the 12000 block of Viers Mill Road in Wheaton. Lara-Chacon dialed 911 for an emergency response to the location and stated that he and Diaz Martinez had been drinking alcohol and that he injured the victim, the release stated.

During an interview with detectives, the defendant said he hit the victim with a baseball bat twice in the head and “finished off” the victim by stabbing him in the neck, until the victim was nearly decapitated, according to the release. 

The State’s Attorney’s Office stated that the defendant said after stabbing the victim, he placed a knife in the victim’s hand and then dialed 911.

“Our thoughts are with the family of Dimer Diaz Martinez today. This sort of sudden, vicious violence has no place in our community and the defendant will now be held accountable,” said State’s Attorney John McCarthy. “We thank the men and women of the jury for rejecting the defendant’s claim of self-defense and helping to ensure Jose Lara-Chacon will not be able to harm another person in this way. I also commend Assistant State’s Attorney James Dietrich for his outstanding work in this matter.”


Attorney records listed Paul Batchelor as Lara-Chacon’s attorney, who did not return phone calls and emails for comment.