New evidence is being released and may create a different outcome for the infamous “Menendez brothers” murder case.

By Portland Tidwell

SAN ANTONIO–  As of May 2023, new evidence is coming out that may be able to overturn the verdict that sentenced the Menendez brothers to life in prison.

Erik and Lyle Menendez both murdered their parents in their Beverly Hills home in 1989.

What made this incredibly high-profile case widely talked about may be due to the Menendez brothers’ “rich kid” status, and their father’s career at RCA records, where he had signed multiple singers and bands before moving onto entertainment in 1986, where the Menendez family would ultimately relocate to California.

With an almost tumultuous and extremely difficult family dynamic, the Menendez brothers would end up dialing 911 claiming that when they came home, their parents were shot dead. 

As time went on, the brothers were ultimately arrested due to their “suspicious” acts and a confession they gave their therapist at the time, Dr. Leon Jerome Oziel

The Menendez brothers did not say they were innocent, but, them and their defense attorney at the time, Leslie Ambranson dropped a bombshell making the jury wonder if the murders were justifiable or not. 

During the trial, the Menendez brothers made multiple claims that their father, Jose Menendez, had molested them from a very young age on multiple occasions, even implying that their mother Kitty Menendez knew about it. 

Lyle and Erik Menendez during their televised trial alongside Leslie Abramson

They argued that the murders were acted out in self-defense due to the life-long abuse by their father. 

The trial lasted six months, and ended in two hung juries creating a mistrial. 

However, during the untelevised trial in 1995-96, the brothers were found guilty of murder in the first degree and sentenced to life in prison.

Decades have gone by, and more eyes have been on the case creating a movement for the freedom of the Menendez brothers. 

In 2022, ABC News released a 20/20 episode on the Menendez brothers entitled “Inside the Menendez Movement” which covers the support the brothers have been receiving being victims of sexual abuse. 

Those who are involved in the movement signed petitions, brought more attention to the case through social media and have been active advocates for victims across the country. 

As of May 2023, new evidence has come out that may change the course for the brothers who are being held at RJ Donovan Correctional Facility

According to CNN, in 2018, both of the brothers state that the letter sent by Erik Menendez to their cousin shares details of the alleged abuse done by their father, which was sent eight months prior to the murders. 

The letter Erik sent Dec. 1988 to their cousin says things like, 

“It’s still happening Andy, but it’s worse for me now,” and, 

“I never know when it’s going to happen and it’s driving me crazy. Every night I stay up thinking he might come in. I need to put it out of my mind. I know what you said before but I’m afraid. You just don’t know dad like I do. He’s crazy! He’s warned me a hundred times about telling anyone, especially Lyle”.

The letter ends with Erik writing that he does not know if he will make it through, and that he needs to stop thinking about it. 

CNN says that the letter was found by Jose Menendez’ younger sister and Andy’s mother, which she then shared with reporters in 2018. 

This is in a habeas petition filed in the Los Angeles Superior Court, as well as the second petition that states that Roy Rosello, a member of the boy group Menudo, in the 1980’s was raped by Jose Menendez, who at the time was the executive at RCA records.

Jose Menendez and Roy Rosello 

Rosello said in an interview that he was raped twice, and orally copulated by Jose Menendez when he was only 13 or 14 years old while he was performing in New York. 

The petition is as of May 2023, currently under review by The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office

“In short, the new evidence not only shows that Jose Menendez was very much a violent and brutal man who would sexually abuse children, but it strongly suggests that – in fact – he was still abusing Erik Menendez as late as December 1988. Just as the defense had argued all along ,” the court document says. 

The new claims may create a different outcome for the Menendez brothers even though some believe that their chances of being retried are slim.

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