Escort murder case to proceed

Luis Oliva

Billy Joe Delacey, 36, seen here in a photo that the Mesa County Sheriff’s Department says was recovered from a computer owned by 26-year-old Luis Alberto Oliva, an escort who was found slain in his Fruitvale apartment on Aug. 1, 2011.

Mesa County District Judge Richard Gurley has ruled there’s probable cause to support all charges lodged by a Mesa County grand jury last year in the slaying of a male escort.

Billy Joe Delacey, 36, should stand trial on all counts in his case including first-degree murder, second-degree murder, possession of sexually exploitative material and misdemeanor theft, in connection with the beating death of 26-year-old Luis Alberto Oliva, the judge’s ruling on Tuesday said.

Oliva’s naked body was found by a roommate inside Oliva’s apartment, 540 29 Road, Unit 6, on the morning of Aug. 1, 2011. Oliva died of multiple blows to the head and face.

According to the indictment, Delacey made arrangements for sex on July 30 and July 31, 2011, with Oliva, after they had met each other via an advertisement Oliva placed on Craigslist. While Delacey acknowledged he was in Oliva’s apartment on July 31 — the last known person to see Oliva alive — he denied involvement in the slaying.

Delacey refused a polygraph examination before moving from Fruita to Pennsylvania in December 2011, the indictment said.

Delacey, a U.S. Army veteran, told several people before leaving the Grand Valley he was about to be deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan, but military representatives told investigators Delacey hadn’t held active or reserve status since 2008, the indictment said.

The U.S. Army confirmed he was deployed twice to combat regions. Delacey told investigators he served as a human intelligence officer.

Delacey was arrested at his home in Montgomery County, Pa., on Sept. 28, 2012.

He’s being held at the Mesa County Jail on $1 million bond.

He’s scheduled to return to court next Tuesday


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