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Updated Oct 24, 2013 - 5:08 pm

Man convicted of rape, murder of Ajo girl in 2009

TUCSON, Ariz. — An Ajo man could be facing the death penalty after being
convicted in the 2009 rape and murder of a 7-year-old girl.

Pima County prosecutors say a jury Thursday found Kyle Alegria guilty of
first-degree murder, kidnapping and sexual contact with a minor under the age of
15.

Alegria was accused of killing Rhia Almeida, a friend of his younger brother
who had come to the house to visit.

Authorities say the girl was brutally beaten and stabbed before Alegria
disposed of her body in the wash next to the home he lived in with his parents
in Ajo.

The Arizona Daily Star reports that jurors on Friday
will start to determine mitigating factors of the murder conviction. After that,
the sentencing phase of the trial begins.

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