Pelham murder suspects plead to lesser charges

By NEAL WAGNER / Managing Editor

COLUMBIANA – Two suspects arrested in connection with the 2012 stabbing death of a 25-year-old man at a Pelham bar have pleaded guilty to less-severe charges through plea agreements, according to Shelby County Circuit Court documents.

Pelham resident Jose Armando Erazo-Acosta, 40, pleaded guilty to one count of manslaughter on March 6, which was lessened through a plea agreement from the murder charge he was originally facing.

Shelby County Circuit Court Judge Dan Reeves sentenced Erazo-Acosta to 15 years in prison, but split the sentence to 30 months in prison followed by five years of probation.

Erazo-Acosta

Erazo-Acosta

Montevallo resident Oscar Adonay Alvarenga, 33, also was originally charged with murder, but pleaded guilty to one misdemeanor count of third-degree assault on March 9 through a plea agreement. According to his plea agreement, Alvarenga’s charge was lessened because he “has rendered substantial assistance and cooperated fully with the state of Alabama (investigation).”

Alvarenga was sentenced to 364 days in the Shelby County Jail, but received jail credit for time served in jail since his 2012 arrest. According to Shelby County Jail records, he was released from the Shelby County Jail on March 9.

Alvarenga

Alvarenga

Pelham police arrested Erazo-Acosta and Alvarenga, along with Pedro Edgardo Portillo, 39, and Fernando Antonio Landaverde-Caballero, 32, in August 2012 and charged them with stabbing and killing 25-year-old Emilio Alonso during an altercation at a Pelham bar off Alabama 119.

Alonso was pronounced dead after Pelham police responded to a wreck on U.S. 31 near Valley Elementary School during the early morning hours of Aug. 12, 2012.

As of March 9, Portillo was awaiting trial on a murder charge, but did not have a future court date set.

Landaverde-Caballero also was awaiting trial on a murder charge, and was scheduled to appear in court on March 23 at 8:30 a.m. for hearing on a bond reduction request.