According to court documents Angel Santiago-Gonzalez would tie up and murder his cellmate Donald Burns
Angel Santiago-Gonzalez would be convicted and sentenced to death
Angel Santiago-Gonzalez Photos
Angel Santiago-Gonzalez Now
|Name:||SANTIAGOGONZALEZ, ANGEL R|
|Initial Receipt Date:||08/10/2007|
|Current Facility:||UNION C.I.|
|Current Release Date:||DEATH SENTENCE|
Angel Santiago-Gonzalez Case
Around 9:40 p.m. on the night of January 9, 2014, corrections officers responded to a disturbance in the K dormitory at the RMC. Captain William Hamilton was the shift commander that evening, and he had just completed his normal rounds, including the K dormitory, without incident. However, after finishing his rounds, Captain Hamilton heard a banging noise while talking with another officer, Sergeant Kelvin Young. Hamilton instructed Sergeant Young to investigate the source of the noise and to advise if he needed help.
The source of the banging noise was inmates who were trying to get the attention of the corrections officers and direct them to the cell where Burns and Santiago-Gonzalez were housed. When Sergeant Young reached the cell, Santiago-Gonzalez was standing inside the cell, and Burns, the victim of a brutal stabbing, was lying on the floor. Burns was also tied up, his hands and his feet both bound. Sergeant Young, who remained outside of the cell, advised via radio that he needed help. Captain Hamilton went to the cell, called for assistance from additional staff members, and notified the on-site medical personnel.
Santiago-Gonzalez had a knife in his hand that he refused to relinquish to the corrections officers until a video camera was brought to the cell to record him. A video camera was brought to the cell, and once the recording began, Santiago-Gonzalez slid the knife under the cell door. He was restrained without incident. While being escorted to a holding cell, Santiago-Gonzalez commented that he was not interested in homosexual activity. A medical assessment of Santiago-Gonzalez conducted shortly thereafter confirmed that he was uninjured.
In Burns’ cell, ligature cutters were used to remove the restraints that Santiago-Gonzalez placed on him. Lieutenant Mark Ficken, who also heard the radio calls, responded to the cell to provide assistance and brought a camera to photograph the scene. Lieutenant Ficken observed Burns’ multiple stab wounds, including a severe neck wound, and believed them to be life-threatening.
Burns was weak but communicative, and he repeatedly said that he was afraid he was going to die. Lieutenant Ficken then questioned Burns about the incident as follows:
FICKEN: Listen to me, listen to me. I need to know what happened in there.
BURNS: I got stabbed multiple times.
FICKEN: By who?
BURNS: My roommate.
FICKEN: What happened? Why did he stab you?
BURNS: I don’t know.
FICKEN: How did he tie you up?
BURNS: I let him.
BURNS: I let him.
FICKEN: You let him tie you up. Why?
BURNS: I don’t know.
FICKEN: Talk to me man, I need to know what happened in there.
BURNS: Tied me up.
FICKEN: He tied—
BURNS: He tried to rape me.
BURNS: He tried to rape me.
FICKEN: You let him tie you up?
FICKEN: You just said you let him tie you up, why did you let him?
BURNS: I don’t know. I’m dying.
BURNS: I’m going to die.
FICKEN: They are going to work on you, man, you need to tell me what happened.
BURNS: I guess (Unintelligible)
FICKEN: Why did you let him tie you up?
BURNS: I don’t know. I was a fool.
BURNS: I was a fool.
FICKEN: Were you all playing games?
BURNS: No, sir.
FICKEN: Well, then how did you let him tie you up?
BURNS: I just did.
FICKEN: What’s your roommate’s name?
FICKEN: You all have a beef?
BURNS: No, sir. He did it out of spite.
BURNS: He did it out of spite.
FICKEN: Out of spite. Did he tie you up before he stabbed you?
BURNS: No, he tied me up and then stabbed me.
FICKEN: He tied you up and then stabbed you, huh?
BURNS: Yes, sir.
FICKEN: All right. So what I need to know though is how did he tie you up? Did he hold you down?
FICKEN: Or did you let him do it?
BURNS: He held me down.
FICKEN: Look, man, I need you to be truthful for me.
BURNS: I am.
FICKEN: He held you down and then he tied you?
FICKEN: Hey, listening to me? What is your name, man?
About three hours after the incident, senior inspector Kevin Ortiz conducted an interview of Santiago-Gonzalez. After being advised of his Miranda rights, Santiago-Gonzalez advised that he understood his rights and wanted to discuss the incident. Santiago-Gonzalez explained that hours before the incident, he asked a corrections officer to move him into Burns’ cell to facilitate Burns helping him with his legal matters. He said that he knew Burns was in prison for committing sexual offenses against minors but that he was not concerned because he just wanted legal help from Burns.1 According to Santiago-Gonzalez, after being in Burns’ cell for two to three hours, Burns started “acting funny,” and Santiago-Gonzalez started cleaning the cell. At some point, Burns touched Santiago-Gonzalez’s buttocks underneath his boxer shorts, and Santiago-Gonzalez observed that Burns’ penis was erect. Santiago-Gonzalez became irate.
Over the course of several minutes, Santiago-Gonzalez formed his plan to attack Burns and ripped his bedsheet into multiple pieces. He said:
And I just, I wasn’t, like, what the fuck, you know what I mean? And I said, I’m going to kill this man. I just blamed him. I wanted to tie him, I want to knock him over. I tied him up and I’m going to kill him and that’s what I did. Just punch him somewhere in the eyes, somewhere in the head.
After Angel Santiago-Gonzalez punched Burns in the head causing Burns to fall down, he tied Burns up with the torn pieces of bedsheet. One piece of the sheet was used to tie Burns’ hands together, another to tie his feet together, and another to tie his bound hands and bound feet together. Then, Santiago-Gonzalez removed a concealed homemade knife from inside a bandage that was tied to his leg. He recalled:
He [Burns] trying, he was, I just hold him down just to keep him, I punched around, all around the neck and head. I tried to stab him in the face, in the eye, heart, chest, back, and hand. I just black out, I just, I had been on psyche [sic] medication for a long time, just all my anger, everything, I just come out. I just black out. To be honest with you, I just, I don’t know I just—
When questioned about his statement that he blacked out, Santiago-Gonzalez responded: “Really, I react slow. You know what I mean? I take my time and because I would like, what the fuck, and so now the mother fucker has to die, he’s going to die. I just plain knocked him out and tie him up, and that’s what I did.”