Following a Barnstable Superior Court trial that lasted several days, a jury returned a guilty verdict in a December 2012 assault to murder case. According to a Cape & Islands District Attorney's Office release, the jury found 22-year-old Elton J. Sanches of West Yarmouth was found guilty of armed assault with the intent to kill, mayhem, assault and battery with a dangerous weapon (a loaded handgun), assault with a dangerous weapon, possession of a firearm without a firearm identification license and possession of ammunition without a firearm identification license.
According to court documents, Sanches and four friends went to Covell's Beach in Centerville on the night of December 11, 2012 to smoke marijuana. Sanches reportedly asked the victim to step outside of the car to talk. Wearing surgical gloves, Sanches pulled a handgun from his sweatshirt and pointed it at the victim. A shot was fired, missing the victim. When Sanches discovered the gun was jammed, he reportedly beat the victim with it about the head and face.
The victim told police he heard four clicks of the gun before breaking free and running to a nearby home for help. The wounds inflicted by the handgun beating caused permanent disfigurement, according to the DA. The case was originally investigated as an armed robbery.
Judge Cornelius Moriarty sentenced Sanches to 8 to 10 years at MCI Cedar Junction. A lesser sentence will also run concurrent with the larger sentence, according to the DA.
Sanches is not a legal US citizen and will be facing US Immigration as well, the release said.
(Right: Elton Sanches. Barnstable Police Department booking photo.)