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FATAL OVERDOSE

Homicide dismissed, but woman pleads guilty to trying to hide body of overdose victim

A Madison woman pleaded guilty Friday to a charge that she attempted to hide a man’s body after he died from a drug overdose in her hotel room in Fitchburg about a year ago.

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A first-degree reckless homicide charge against Jatziry G. Ceniceros-Martinez, 27, was dismissed as part of a plea agreement, but she pleaded guilty to attempting to hide a corpse, which carries up to six years and three months of combined prison and extended supervision.

Ceniceros-Martinez was charged in April with reckless homicide for the Jan. 1, 2021, overdose death of Luis A. Ochoa-Zelaya, 33, whose body was found in a hallway at Staybridge Suites, 2916 Hardrock Road, where Ceniceros-Martinez had left it after trying to move it from her room using a luggage cart.

According to a criminal complaint, Ceniceros-Martinez told police she was trying to take Ochoa-Zelaya to a hospital but was only able to move him to the hallway and left him there. But a friend, who had come to the hotel when Ceniceros-Martinez texted her that she had an emergency, told police Ceniceros-Martinez was trying to move Ochoa-Zelaya’s body to somewhere other than a hospital, the complaint states.

Jatziry Ceniceros-Martinez

Ceniceros-Martinez

The friend and another man had tried to revive Ochoa-Zelaya with Narcan, but it did not work. When they left, Ceniceros-Martinez told police she knew Ochoa-Zelaya was “dead,” the complaint states.

Ceniceros-Martinez told police she was a sex worker and Ochoa-Zelaya was a client who used some of her drugs and became unconscious. An autopsy found he died from a mix of fentanyl, acetylfentanyl and heroin, the complaint states.

Ceniceros-Martinez also pleaded guilty to identity theft, for using the identification of a woman stolen from a house in Madison to buy cellphone service and rent the hotel room to entertain clients. She had been staying there since Dec. 1, 2020.

She also pleaded guilty to maintaining a drug trafficking place.

The identity theft conviction carries up to six years of combined prison and extended supervision and the drug trafficking conviction carries up to 3½ years.

Ceniceros-Martinez will be sentenced by Circuit Judge David Conway after a presentence investigation is completed by the state Department of Corrections.


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