WEST VALLEY Utah (ABC4 Utah) – Roberto Arguelles was under the glare of the public eye.
It was 1996 and Arguelles confessed to being a serial killer. He was already a convicted sexual predator, but these latest revelations unveiled the true nature of what some called an “evil” man.
Arguelles was charged with four counts of capital murder and was appearing in court for his first appearance. Margo Bond’s son was there too. His mother was Arguelles’ first victim in 1992.
“They kicked me out of the court because I had it all mapped out that I was going to run and jump over the table … and hit him,” said Ryan Sevier. “They saw me calculating out there and they told me I had to leave, and they wouldn’t let me back in the court.”
And so, Margo Bond’s son remained in the court’s hallway, angry with the man who killed his mother.
“He was a sick man,” Sevier said.
At age 16 Arguelles went to prison for raping two young girls and for the attempted murder of one of the victims. He was paroled in 1991. He returned to prison the following year for sexually molesting two children. But according to Arguelles, he was also engaging in murder.
Arguelles was accused of murdering Bond in February 1992. A week later, 13-year-old Stephanie Blundell was kidnapped while walking to school. Three weeks passed when he offered Lisa Martinez and Tuesday Roberts a ride. They were never seen again.
While Arguelles was in prison for sexually molesting the two young children, he boasted of his murders. Inmates tipped police off.
According to a former Salt Lake prosecutor, it was the Margo Bond case that Arguelles was first confronted with.
“He confessed to that,” Morgan said. “Once he was taken into custody he confessed to the pig farm killings and that’s how those bodies were discovered.”
Arguelles even took authorities to the family’s pig farm where authorities dug up the bodies of Martinez and Roberts, the teens who vanished in 1992.
Martinez’s grandmother also followed Arguelles court appearances in 1996 and spoke to reporters afterwards.
“I just wanted to know if she got into the car or did, he force her into the car,” said Rose Edwards. “I know how she died.”
Arguelles handcuffed the two girls and tried to rape Martinez. She found him off and then he stabbed her multiple times with a wooden chisel. Arguelles then raped Roberts before strangling her.
Arguelles stunned the courtroom during his trial. He told the judge he wanted to plead guilty and die by execution.
Veronia Martinez, Lisa’s sister was there and objected to the execution.
“I thought he should have suffered in prison his whole life,” she told the Justice Files. “He wanted the easy way out because he couldn’t deal with being incarcerated and inmates bothering him and harassing him.”
Arguelles had his own reasons according to a 1997 ABC4 report.
Reporter: “He says no one has been able to help him with his problems. No one can he said. ‘That’s why no one can let me out’ he quoted Arguelles. During his confession he told his investigator Jenny Glover that he needed to atone for his sins and the only way to do that is through execution.”
But his mental health worsened during the appeal process ordered by the Judge. The appeal had angered Arguelles who wanted to die. Over the course of several court hearings, a net was placed over him and his mouth was taped shut. He had become disruptive and was spitting those who approached him.
“Just the look on that guy’s face, with the net on, the guy is just a psychopath,” said Sevier who witnessed Arguelles in court. “You know who thinks they can rehabilitate a guy like that? It bugs me.”
In prison, Arguelles attempted to commit suicide on two occasions. On the third try he succeeded. That part of the story will be told Friday.