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Trial of Mass. man accused of killing wife starts

February 17, 2012
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SPRINGFIELD, Mass.—The trial of a Springfield man accused of stabbing his estranged wife then setting her home on fire to hide his crimes has started.

Opening statements and testimony in the trial of 41-year-old Benjamin Sanchez began Thursday in Hampden Superior Court.

Sanchez is charged with murder, arson and violating a restraining order in connection with the July 2009 death of 38-year-old Ana Cruz. She died of multiple stab wounds and smoke inhalation.

The Republican (http://bit.ly/zJR8qs) reports that Cruz's children took the stand Thursday. Her son testified that he had heard Sanchez threaten to kill his mother on multiple occasions.

Sanchez's lawyer said in opening statements that there is no evidence to connect his client to Cruz's death.

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Information from: The Springfield Republican, http://www.masslive.com/news/

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