Man in prison for murdering lover in 2009 sentenced to 40 years after killing his wife in 1989

0

Jose Rodriguez-Cruz, 55, above, has admitted to killing his wife Marta Rodriguez in 1989 while in prison for murdering girlfriend Pamela Butler in 2009

Jose Rodriguez-Cruz, 55, left, has admitted to killing his wife Marta Rodriguez, right, in 1989 while in prison for murdering girlfriend Pamela Butler in 2009.

An “abusive” husband serving time for the murder of his girlfriend has been sentenced to 40 years for murdering his estranged wife more than three decades ago.

Jose Rodriguez-Cruz, 55, was convicted on Monday for the murder of his wife Marta Rodriguez in 1989.

He buried her on a median strip off Interstate-95 in Stafford County, Virginia, and told their son Hansel that she had left the country.

Marta should have testified against him on charges of assault and kidnapping when she disappeared.

Her remains were found in 1991, but detectives did not match the identity until 2018 after a relative of Rodriguez-Cruz confused police by assuming her identity.

Rodriguez-Cruz had spent 12 years serving the murder of his girlfriend Pamela Butler in 2009, which he admitted in 2017.

While searching for the spot where Butler’s body was buried, police recalled that the unidentified remains of another woman had been found several miles away.

After seeing his father convicted, Hansel Rodriguez applauded the long sentence.

“I’m glad that, despite being my father, he’s off the street for good.”

Scroll down for video

Marta Rodriguez, above, was 28 years old when she disappeared in 1989.  She should have testified against her husband on charges of assault and kidnapping

Marta Rodriguez, above, was 28 years old when she disappeared in 1989.  She should have testified against her husband on charges of assault and kidnapping

Marta Rodriguez, above, was 28 years old when she disappeared in 1989. She should have testified against her husband on charges of assault and kidnapping

Pamela Butler, a federal employee, went missing in 2009.  Rodriguez-Cruz admitted her murder in 2017

Pamela Butler, a federal employee, went missing in 2009.  Rodriguez-Cruz admitted her murder in 2017

Pamela Butler, a federal employee, went missing in 2009. Rodriguez-Cruz admitted her murder in 2017

The Washington Post reported that the “torturous” case had “harassed investigators for years.”

Rodriguez-Cruz was dating Butler, a 47-year-old employee at the Environmental Protection Agency, in 2009, when she mysteriously disappeared just before Valentine’s Day.

Thanks in large part to the persistent efforts of Butler’s brother Derrick to raise awareness about the case, and Arlington County Detective Rosa Ortiz, he was finally arrested in 2017. NBC Washington reported.

Although the police relied on circumstantial evidence, Rodriguez-Cruz admitted to killing her.

Rodriguez-Cruz took police to where he buried her body on Interstate 95, but construction workers had since dug on the site and her remains could not be found.

Police discovered that the remains of an individual murder victim – Marta Rodriguez – had been found buried just a few miles away, and a DNA test confirmed her identity.

Police are looking for Pamela Butler's remains along I-95 in Stafford County, Virginia

Police are looking for Pamela Butler's remains along I-95 in Stafford County, Virginia

Police are looking for Pamela Butler’s remains along I-95 in Stafford County, Virginia

Jose Rodriguez-Cruz was an abusive and abusive husband, police say, who was charged with assault and kidnapping when his wife disappeared

Jose Rodriguez-Cruz was an abusive and abusive husband, police say, who was charged with assault and kidnapping when his wife disappeared

Jose Rodriguez-Cruz was an abusive and abusive husband, police say, who was charged with assault and kidnapping when his wife disappeared

Pamela Butler, left, disappeared in 2009, but it was largely thanks to the efforts of her brother Derrick, right, that her killer Jose Rodriguez-Cruz was brought to trial in 2017.

Pamela Butler, left, disappeared in 2009, but it was largely thanks to the efforts of her brother Derrick, right, that her killer Jose Rodriguez-Cruz was brought to trial in 2017.

Pamela Butler, left, disappeared in 2009, but it was largely thanks to the efforts of her brother Derrick, right, that her killer Jose Rodriguez-Cruz was brought to trial in 2017.

Prosecutors said Rodriguez-Cruz is an abusive husband who is prone to extreme violence when rejected by women.

In March 1989, a police officer in Arlington saw Rodriguez-Cruz dragging his estranged wife down the street.

After his arrest, police found duct tape and rope in his car and he said to an officer, “If I can’t have her, no one else will.”

Authorities said the remains had not previously been identified because the sister of Jose Rodriguez-Cruz’s second wife assumed her identity.

WTOP reported that in 2000 the woman had used Marta Rodriguez’s name to get a driver’s license.

A missing person alert was triggered and a Miami police officer contacted the woman. Authorities subsequently removed her name from the missing persons database.

After the conviction by the Stafford County Circuit Court, Derrick told NBC Washington, “No one should have to go through what I’ve been through, what Hans has been through.”