Belton: Jury returns guilty verdict in deadly rest stop stabbing

Stanley Polk. (Jail photo)
Stanley Polk. (Jail photo)(KWTX)
Published: May. 17, 2018 at 4:10 PM CDT
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A Bell County jury returned a guilty verdict Thursday in the murder trial of Stanley Polk, 48, of Las Vegas, Nev., an aspiring trucker accused of stabbing his instructor to death during an argument on Aug. 27, 2015, at a rest stop south of Salado

The punishment phase of the trial begins on Friday, which is Polk’s 49th birthday.

Polk could be sentenced from 5 to 99 years or life in prison.

Instructor Ronald Ruiz, 62, of South Bend Ind., was stabbed repeatedly in the chest and stomach during an argument on the evening of Aug. 27, 2015 and was flown to Scott & White Hospital in Temple where he was pronounced dead.

State and local officers searched through the night for Polk, who was found early the next morning walking down an Interstate 35 service road.

A knife was recovered after the arrest.

Polk has been held in the Bell County Jail since his arrest.

His bond was set at $150,000.