Murder trial in death of mother and baby begins Apr. 1

Waco, Tx (FOX 44) — The capital murder trial of the man accused of shooting a woman and her baby at Tradinghouse Lake in 2017 is finally set to begin on Monday, April 1.

Christopher Weiss has been in the McLennan County Jail since November 8, 2017. He was 26 years old when he was arrested, and is 32 now. The trial has been delayed for multiple reasons, including the recusal of two district attorneys in the case. It will be prosecuted by a Dallas County District Attorney, but will be heard before 19th District Court Judge Thomas West. Interviews of potential jurors who have filled out questionnaires will begin Monday. Prosecutors will not be seeking the death penalty in the trial.

Weiss is accused of killing 24-year old Valerie Martinez and their one-year-old daughter Azariah at Trading House Lake in November 5, 2017. Investigators say Weiss was married and had two children when he became romantically involved with the victim, having given her a false name. He had met her on a social media site.

Deputies say she started searching for him after he stopped seeing her. She was able to trace him through a picture of his license plate, and eventually let him know she had a child.

He was accused of setting up a meeting with her at the county park at Tradinghouse Creek Lake, where the two victims were later found dead near McLennan County Park Road 3.

Deputies were called around noon on a Sunday by lake visitors who said they found a woman outside her car. When deputies got there, they discovered Martinez and her daughter had both been shot to death. Azariah was still buckled into her car seat.

Through their investigation, McLennan County deputies developed Weiss as a suspect and placed Weiss’s home on Berger Road in Temple under surveillance.

Weiss was arrested while driving his pickup truck in downtown Temple, near the intersection of Central Avenue and Main Street. His wife and two daughters were in the truck with him when the arrest was made.

During a search of Weiss’s white 2010 Dodge Ram, deputies say they found a rifle, a .45 caliber handgun, two empty magazines, a phone, and several other items including birth certificates.

Weiss was indicted on capital murder charges in January 2018. He has remained in the jail the entire time since his arrest.

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