WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. (AP) — An appliance delivery man was sentenced Wednesday to life in prison for beating a 75-year-old woman to death and setting her on fire at her Florida home.
A Palm Beach County circuit judge gave Jorge Dupre Lachazo two life sentences, plus another 30-year sentence, according to court records. The 24-year-old was convicted in January of first-degree murder, burglary and arson, following a three-day trial.
Dupre Lachazo and another man delivered a washer and dryer purchased from Best Buy to Evelyn Smith Udell’s Boca Raton, Florida, home in August 2019, officials said. After installing the appliances, the other man went outside and reported hearing screams minutes later. He found Udell on the floor and called 911. Dupre Lachazo drove off in the delivery truck but was later stopped by a responding officer, investigators said.
Police found a rubber mallet, which was used in the attack, and a can of paint thinner that Dupre Lachazo used to start the fire next to Udell’s body, according to law enforcement. Both had Dupre Lachazo’s fingerprints on them, prosecutors said. Investigators also found that the woman’s wallet had been disturbed, suggesting theft as a motive for the attack.
Defense attorneys didn’t deny that Dupre Lachazo attacked the older woman, but they argued the slaying wasn’t premeditated or intentional.