Judge denies motion to delay trial for Salvadoran man accused of killing 4

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In this Jan. 24, 2019, file photo, Wilber Ernesto Martinez-Guzman, of El Salvador, is escorted into the courtroom for his initial appearance in Carson City Justice Court in Carson City, Nev. Lawyers for Martinez-Guzman, a Salvadoran immigrant charged with four northern Nevada homicides, want to postpone his trial to determine whether he suffers from an intellectual disability that disqualifies him for the death penalty. Public defenders for 20-year-old Martinez-Guzman have filed a motion for a continuance in the trial scheduled to begin April 6, 2020, perhaps delaying it until Feb. 2021. (AP Photo/Scott Sonner, File)

RENO, Nevada (CNN) ⁠— A judge has rejected a request to delay the trial of Wilber Martinez-Guzman in Nevada until 2021.

Prosecutors say Martinez-Guzman, of El Salvador, killed four people over 10 days in January.

The defense said it wanted the delay because it needs the testimony of a Spanish-speaking neuropsychologist. Their goal is to show that Martinez-Guzman has an intellectual disability.

The state can’t execute people with an IQ of lower than 70, and the defense has suggested their client’s IQ could be as low as 55.

The judge agreed to push the trial back to Aug. 31, 2020, on one condition: The defense has to assure her their neuro-psychologist can make a July 29 hearing on Martinez-Guzman’s intellectual disability.

Martinez-Guzman rose to national attention when president trump used the undocumented immigrant to promote his border wall.

In January, Martinez-Guzman was accused in court Thursday of being in the U.S. illegally and possessing weapons and selling jewelry stolen from some of the dead.

Investigators say he told police he robbed and killed his elderly victims during a 10-day rampage because he needed money to buy methamphetamine.

A grand jury in March indicted Martinez-Guzman on four counts of murder with the use of a deadly weapon, three counts of burglary while in possession of a firearm and one count each of burglary, burglary while gaining possession of a firearm and possession of a stolen firearm.

The four slaying victims include Gerald David, 81, and his 80-year-old wife, Sharon David, a prominent Reno Rodeo Association couple who had employed Martinez-Guzman as a landscaper last summer at their house where they were found dead Jan. 16.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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