Roommate takes stand in five-year-old murder case

OCEANSIDE — A former housemate of a 24-year-old woman who was murdered and then dismembered came clean April 28 about his time in the Oceanside residence. In the winter of 2005, Liko Hussey was an addict living in a single-family house on East Parker Street with at least five other people, including the victim, Janina Hardoy, and the defendant, Joaquin Martinez. During that time he injected methamphetamines daily, often several times a day, as well as used other drugs, including heroin. Five years later, Hussey is sober. He has been for four years, and is now a key witness in the homicide of his roommate Janina Hardoy. Hussey testified he had been in the house several months before Hardoy disappeared. He said the atmosphere in the northeastern Oceanside home became more negative as methamphetamines became more prevalent in the residence. Because of his heavy drug use during that time, Hussey said he had a difficult time recalling specific dates of incidents that occurred in the house. One thing he remembered though, was that Martinez was the person who shot Hardoy up with heroin.
“(Martinez) always did it, that’s where it all began,” Hussey said. Hardoy disappeared Feb. 2, 2005. After an extensive search, all that was found of her were her hands and her feet stuffed in a backpack located in a mobile home park on East Vista Way in Vista. Prosecutors allege Martinez murdered Hardoy, partly because she threatened to go to the police about bank holdups several of the roommates had committed. However, defense attorney Daniel Mitts has argued that Hardoy accidentally overdosed on heroin and that one of the housemates, possibly Hussey, panicked and hacked up her body to avoid any interaction with law enforcement. Mitts said the authorities wrongly charged his client because of his appearance, which includes tattoos on his neck and eyelids, and his status as a documented gang member, while Hussey, who is more clean cut and not a gang member, was only charged with being an accessory after the fact relating to Hardoy’s death. In Mitts’ opening argument, he called Hussey a “monster” who hid behind his good looks. When questioned by the authorities about the case, Mitts said Hussey stayed quiet and in doing so got minimal prison time. Hussey testified he spent two years in prison relating to Hardoy’s murder. Martinez has told police that while he may have been the last person to inject Hardoy with heroin before her death, it was Hussey who used a pillow case to suffocate the young woman whose family described her as a “free spirit.” Additionally, Martinez said Hussey was then supposed to dispose of the backpack containing Hardoy’s body parts. Still, another roommate, Lisa Brown, who dated Martinez, told police the defendant smothered Hardoy with a pillowcase after poisoning her. Brown was also convicted of being an accessory after the fact in connection to Hardoy’s death. Verbal arguments between the roommates, especially with Hardoy, started occurring on a more regular basis with the use of harder drugs, Hussy testified. Coupled with Hussey and several other roommates, including Martinez, not being able to pay rent, the tension in the house grew in the months leading up to Hardoy’s disappearance. Tensions escalated further after she found out that Hussy and Martinez, as well as at least two other housemates, were robbing North County banks to make rent. Hussey testified that he doesn’t ever remember hearing anyone talk about overdosing or killing Hardoy. When asked in court how he would have reacted if he had to deal with someone overdosing, Hussey testified he would have either called the authorities and left the residence or dropped the person off at the entrance to the emergency room and fled the scene. He said under no circumstance would he have mutilated the deceased person’s body in an attempt to cover up the death. Martinez faces up to life in prison if convicted.

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