Man given 2 years in jail for stabbing, killing gang member

LAWRENCEVILLE - A Norcross man jailed for stabbing a known gang member to death last year did so in self-defense, according to court documents.

Jose Luis Martinez-Macias, 27, struck a deal with prosecutors to drop murder charges against him to the lesser offense of involuntary manslaughter.

A Gwinnett Superior Court judge imposed a prison sentence of two years, followed by eight years of probation, against Martinez-Macias in December.

Martinez-Macias was transferred this week to the Georgia Department of Corrections, jail records show. He will receive credit for the 13 months he's been incarcerated thus far, his sentencing stipulates.

Martinez-Macias stabbed Norcross resident Marvin Talavera, 18, multiple times in the parking lot of a Pirkle Road apartment complex Jan. 8, after the victim flashed hand gestures representing the North Side 18th Street, police said.

According to court documents, the victim attacked Martinez-Macias and his two brothers at the Oakbrook Pointe complex, swinging a belt that struck Martinez-Macias in the eye, impairing his vision.

Talavera later died at Gwinnett Medical Center as a result of his injuries.

Police said the weapon used in the stabbing was found at Martinez-Macias' home. He denied having any affiliation with a gang.

Neither Martinez-Macias nor his brothers are legal residents of the United States, a fact that could have prejudiced a jury, his defense team argued in pretrial documents.