A man who fatally stabbed his estranged wife six years ago, leaving her body in an SUV at the Essex Street municipal parking garage, has been sentenced to 19 years-life in prison.
The murder happened in May of 2008. 44-year old Leonida Nunez of the Bronx was the mother of tree small children. She left William Davila, a resident of 54 Rutgers St., after four years, but he would not leave her alone. Nunez went to court numerous times seeking protection. He was put in jail in 2007 for violating a court order and beating Nunez.
On December 9 of this year, Davila pleaded guilty in state Supreme Court to second degree murder. According to the guilty plea, he stabbed Nunez multiple times in the throat and torso as the two sat in the car, which was parked on the second floor of the garage, across from the Essex Street Market. Police discovered her body wrapped in a blanket. Davila had fled, but he was arrested two days later.
“The death of Leonida (Nunez) is another harrowing example of how quickly domestic violence can turn fatal,” District Attorney Vance said in a statement. “Not only did this defendant brutally kill Ms. Davila, but he fled the scene, leaving her body in a parked car to be found by strangers. I would like to thank my Office’s prosecutors who have dedicated themselves since 2008 to seeing justice done in this case. I would also urge anyone who is a victim of domestic violence to call my Office’s Domestic Violence Hotline at 212-335-4308 – help is available for those who need it.”
Leonida Nunez’s best friend, Diane Delgado, held annual vigils in her memory. In 2011, she told the Daily News, “I want to make sure that no one forgets her, and that hopefully this never happens to another woman.”