Cardenas pleads insanity in killing of Omarosa’s brother

By John W. Goodwin Jr.


A city man charged with gunning down the brother of Omarosa Manigault-Stallworth, reality-television personality and Youngstown native, has told the court he is not guilty because he was insane at the time of the shooting.

Marco Cardenas, 22, of Plymouth Avenue was indicted on counts of aggravated murder, felonious assault and aggravated burglary. He is accused of shooting Jack Manigault, 40, of East Avondale Avenue as he lay in bed with his girlfriend Oct. 9.

Cardenas, along with his attorney, Louis DeFabio, appeared Thursday before Judge R. Scott Krichbaum of Mahoning County Common Pleas Court for a pretrial hearing. He is tentatively set for trial later this month.

At the hearing, DeFabio told the court that his client will be entering a plea of not guilty by reason of insanity. After inquiry by the court, the plea was accepted.

DeFabio also said his client is not able to understand the “nature and objective of the proceedings against him and that he is not capable of presently assisting in his defense.”

He asked the court to order an evaluation to determine Cardenas’ competency to stand trial.

Judge Krichbaum ordered that the Forensic Psychiatric Center of Northeast Ohio conduct an evaluation of Cardenas’ competency to stand trial.

According to police, Manigault was home with his 34-year-old girlfriend when Cardenas, who is the woman’s former boyfriend, forced his way into the house past two juveniles and entered a bedroom where Manigault and the woman were sleeping.

Several shots were fired, and Manigault ran from the room and collapsed with a gunshot wound to the shoulder and superficial wounds to the head.

The woman told police Cardenas told her he knew she was with Manigault, then hit her in the head with the gun before trying to shoot Manigault again. Cardenas was forced out of the door by the two juveniles. City police arrested Cardenas a short time later.

Don't Miss a Story

Sign up for our newsletter to receive daily news directly in your inbox.