RUSSELLVILLE — Capital murder charges have been filed against a man recovering from self-inflicted stab wounds and who is accused of killing his estranged wife Friday, officials said.
Angel Campos Nava 33, Franklin 48, Russellville, is in intensive care at Huntsville Hospital, Russellville Police Chief Chris Hargett said Monday.
Hargett said Nava, who also goes by Angel Campos, remains under 24-hour security at the facility. Nava is accused of killing Leslie Hope Plott, 25, of Russellville.
Courthouse officials said murder warrants were issued Monday morning against Nava, who has two prior domestic violence convictions. The charges were later upgraded to capital murder. If convicted of capital murder, Nava faces the possibility of the death penalty.
“They have been able to determine that the assault that led to the death started in the car,” Franklin County District Attorney Joey Rushing said. “Those circumstances, in this case, fall under the stipulations that merit the charge of capital murder.”
A preliminary autopsy report released Monday revealed Plott sustained deep lacerations to her neck and had been badly beaten in the face.
Hargett said Plott was taking Nava to his house to get his car so he could go to work when they apparently argued.
Police said Plott’s body was found about 1:30 a.m. Friday on the east side of Jackson Avenue almost in a ditch, near the entrance to Good Shepherd Catholic Church.
Hargett said it appears Plott was attacked with a knife found inside the car. He said two or three bloody knives were found inside the vehicle.
Another knife was found outside the car where the assault continued, police said.
Hargett said Nava was sitting inside a Lincoln Navigator the couple had been in earlier when officers arrived. He already had been stabbed.
Nava was convicted of domestic violence in 2003 and 2004. Authorities said Plott was the victim in the those domestic violence cases.
A bond of $500,000 was set for Nava on Friday afternoon. When he is released from the hospital he will be returned to Franklin County, authorities said.
Tom Smith can be reached at 256-740-5757 or tom.smith@TimesDaily.com.