A Colombian government prosecutor has revealed that the Texas man who is accused of killing his DJ girlfriend had ‘forced’ her to have sex before he beat and choked her to death.
John Poulos, 35, made his second court appearance Friday afternoon in the capital city of Bogotá, just five days after the body of Valentina Trespalacios, 23, was found inside a suitcase in a dumpster.
Poulos, the father of one boy and two girls in the United States, declined to plea guilty to one count of aggravated femicide and another of concealment, alteration or destruction of evidence of a crime scene.
‘I am aware of my decision, and did not accept the charges,’ he said.
Daniel Gómez, the lead prosecutor appointed by the Office of the Attorney General disclosed that Poulos attacked Trespalacios after he forced her to have sex and then repeatedly struck her body with his fists. He then wrapped his hands around her neck until he strangled her to death.
‘There was a cycle of psychological violence that preceded the crime, which was represented in all the activity of jealousy and control over Valentina’s social life,’ Gómez. ‘You took her life as the result of a jealousy process.’
John Poulos (center) returned to court Friday for a court hearing as he is accused of murdering his girlfriend, Valentina Trespalacios
Valentina Trespalacios, a DJ in Bogotá, Colombia, was allegedly murdered by her Texas boyfriend, John Poulos. Her body was found in a suitcase that was tossed into a dumpster allegedly by Poulos last Sunday before he purchased a flight to flee from Colombia to Panamá
Former House Speaker Paul Ryan with Ashley Poulos (left), Jackson Poulos (center) and John Poulos (right)
Poulos appeared to be calm, at times leaning back on his chair and resting his hands behind his head while he sat next to his lawyer and a court appointed interpreter while Gómez made the shocking revelations.
He added that Poulos bent Trespalacios’ body in order to make her fit into the suitcase. However, he left her head sticking out of the luggage bag and covered the bag with a towel.
Gómez added that Poulos had hired a private investigator to follow Trespalacios.
He said it was a ‘behavior that must be understood as violent, given that it affected the physical, moral and psychological integrity of the victim, since it exploited her status as a woman.’
On Sunday, Poulos was captured on camera placing the suitcase into the trunk of a Volkswagen Voyager in the garage of the Bogotá north side apartment building and then driving away.
He drove to the south side of Bogotá, where he tossed the luggage bag inside a dumpster next to a park, and drove towards the airport.
Before boarding a flight to Panamá City, Panamá, as part of his escape, Gómez said that Poulos threw away Trespalacios’ cellphone at El Dorado International Airport.
Poulos’ plan to avoid capture included the purchase with cash of two airplane tickets, one from Panamá City to São Paulo, Brazil, to throw off the Colombian National Police’s international manhunt and a flight to Istanbul, Turkey, where he would connect to a plane to Montenegro, where there is no extradition treaty with Colombia.
Panamanian immigration agents and the Interpol arrested him Tuesday night at Tocumen International Airport moments before he was about to board Turkish Airlines flight to Istanbul.
Poulos told authorities in Panamá that the defunct Medellín Cartel was behind Trespalacios’ murder and that he had fled Colombia because cartel members wanted to kill him.
Gómez explained to Poulos that if he decided to go to trial, he could be sentenced 500 to 600 months should he be found guilty of murdering Trespalacios. He could face up to 48 months in prison for concealment, alteration or destruction of evidence.
However, the prosecution left open an offer that would reduce the sentence to 375 months if he accepted a guilty plea for feminicide as well as a reduction of 24 months for the other charge.
The judge would have to accept the terms of the agreement and Poulos wouldn’t be allowed to back out of it if he agreed.
An autopsy report showed that Colombian DJ Valentina Trespalacios was strangled and beaten
A homeless man was searching through a waste container in the Bogotá neighborhood of Los Cámbulos when he discovered the suitcase with Valentina Trespalacios’ body
Trespalacios’ hairstylist, Veronica Jiménez, confirmed to DailyMail.com that Poulos was married and had three children in the United States, but that that mother of the kids had reportedly filed a restraining order against him because he was violent.
He got divorced in 2021 and had been dating Trespalacios for eight months and planned to marry her.
Poulos’ oldest son, Jackson Poulos, was only four years old when doctors diagnosed him with stage 4 Rhabdomyosarcoma in his GI tract and abdomen. The cancer is very rare, with only about 350 cases a year in the United States.
In 2017, the child underwent a 13-hour operation in which the surgeon removed more than 150 tumors that were detected in his pelvis, sigmoid colon, appendix, spleen and gallbladder.
Valentina Trespalacios (pictured) was dating her boyfriend John Poulos for eight months
John Poulos (pictured) was taken into custody in Panama on Tuesday moments before he was about to board a flight to Turkey and then connect to Montenegro. On Wednesday, a Colombian judge approved a request by the Office of the Attorney General in Colombia that was required to present to Panamanian authorities to process Poulo’s extradition
The boy was a special guest of former House Speaker Paul Ryan at the House Chamber for former President Donald Trump’s message to a joint session of the United States Congress on January 30, 2018.
Jiménez said that Poulos had become increasingly jealous and was upset with Trespalacios because she refused his demands to go public with their relationship on her social media accounts. Trespalacios had explained to him that her network was only to promote her DJ work.
Poulos arrived at the apartment Thursday and moved in with Trespalacios on Friday evening. He accompanied her to a DJ gig early Saturday morning at Nexxus bar.
A homeless person searching a dumpster for recyclables Sunday afternoon discovered a blue suitcase with Trespalacios’ head sticking out from the side.
Read more at DailyMail.co.uk