Mistrial declared in trial of man accused of murdering roommate

OKEECHOBEE — A mistrial was declared Monday, Dec. 10, a few hours after the trial for accused murderer Mark Deschamps began. The judge declared a mistrial during jury selection when according to State Attorney Ashley Albright, an issue arose giving him no choice.

Deschamps was arrested in October 2016 after being accused of stabbing Flavia Leticia Escobar Munoz, 23, to death in the Playland Park home they shared.

According to the arrest report, Deschamps also reportedly stabbed 40-year-old Dwayne Ford Thomas in the face with the same 10-12 inch butcher knife with which he had reportedly stabbed Ms. Munoz.

Mark Deschamps

Deschamps is reported to have been awakened from sleep at around 3 a.m. in a delusional state of mind according to OCSO Detective Howard Pickering. He believed Mr. Thomas and Ms. Munoz were in a relationship and were stealing from him. They denied his allegations.

Deschamps allegedly stabbed Mr. Thomas in the face, the knife breaking his orbital bone and his nose and coming out the left side of his face. He was left with a three inch laceration in his cheek.

According to the report, Ms. Munoz was in the doorway of the bathroom when she was stabbed in the chest. She then stumbled out of the house and into the driveway where it is believed she died within minutes.

Detective Pickering described the small bathroom where the stabbings occurred as a bloodbath. “It looked like a slaughterhouse,” he said.

Deschamps had 30 prior felony arrests with 15 convictions and 16 misdemeanor arrests with five convictions on his record.

A new trial date was set for Jan. 22, 2019.

Cathy Womble is a staff writer for the Lake Okeechobee News.

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