HRLR
Los Tocayos Carlos
Chapter 10
Page: 11 of 14
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All Chapter 10 Footnotes

Escobedo even forgot to obtain a set of "reference" fingerprints from the body of Wanda Lopez, to rule out the victim out as the source of the few prints Infante had recovered. Although the prosecutor assigned to the case discovered the mistake a day before Lopez's funeral, by the time an officer dispatched by Escobedo arrived at the funeral home, Wanda had already been buried.196

The veteran detective worried that his inexperienced colleagues had simply quit when they heard over their radios that a man found under a truck was identified by witnesses. "Just because he's arrested under" a vehicle, Garza said, "they thought it was open and shut. But where's the evidence?"197 There was no way they should have finished the field investigation in barely an hour.198

"Just let [the] investigation take, whether it be one day, two days, or three days," he said.199 The scene was perfect for finding evidence that the killer had left behind.200 The crime was violent and chaotic, and an eyewitness chased off the perpetrator before he could cover his tracks.201 Whatever he left behind was right there in a small space "no more than about ten by ten."202 With time and some natural light, there was no telling what would be found.203

If Escobedo had let the crime scene see the light of day instead of letting store employees scrub it down and re-open before dawn, "the results of this case would have been totally different."204

The crime scene "was not gone over," Garza concluded. The people assigned "did not do a proper job, especially on a capital case." The detective "didn't have the proper experience of how to investigate a major crime," and the "identification person did not have the proper experience" and "the proper training [and] knowledge of what to look for at a crime scene." Together, they "ignored and overlooked" the most promising evidence.205 Top to bottom, it was "a screwed up damned case."206

* * * * *

Garza didn't mince words. Asked to consider all the evidence Escobedo did and didn't find, the longtime detective said if he were sitting on a jury, "there is no way I could convict somebody of capital murder."207

Factoring in what he knew from his own sources, Garza felt "we had the wrong person."208 "Carlos Hernandez [was] the one that I felt . . . had committed this particular crime."209

Sources

Testimony in Court and Depositions

  1. George Aguirre, Witness to Events Outside Shamrock Gas Station, Pretrial Test., Texas v. DeLuna, No. 83-CR–194-A (Tex. Dist. Ct., 28th Dist. June 20, 1983);

  2. George Aguirre, Witness to Events Outside Shamrock Gas Station, Trial Test., Texas v. DeLuna, No. 83-CR–194-A (Tex. Dist. Ct., 28th Dist. July 18, 1983);

  3. Kevan Baker, Eyewitness to Attack on Wanda Lopez, Pretrial Test., Texas v. DeLuna, No. 83-CR–194-A (Nueces Cty., 28th Dist. Tex. June 20, 1983);

  4. Kevan Baker, Witness to Attack on Wanda Lopez, Trial Test., Texas v. DeLuna, No. 83-CR–194-A (Nueces Cty., 28th Dist. Tex. July 15, 1983);

  5. Olivia Escobedo, Corpus Christi Police Detective in Wanda Lopez and Dahlia Sauceda Cases, Trial Test., Texas v. DeLuna, No. 83-CR–194-A (Nueces Cty., 28th Dist. Tex., July 18, 1983);

  6. Eddie Garza, Corpus Christi Police Detective, Sentencing Test., Texas v. DeLuna, No. 83-CR–194-A (Nueces Cty., 28th Dist. Tex. July 21, 1983);

  7. Joel Infante, Corpus Christi Police Identification Technician, Trial Test., Texas v. DeLuna, No. 83-CR–194-A (Nueces Cty., 28th Dist. Tex. July 21, 1983);

  8. Eddie McConley, Corpus Christi Police Officer, Trial Test., Texas v. DeLuna, No. 83-CR–194-A (Nueces Cty., 28th Dist. Tex. July 15, 1983);

  9. Bruno Mejia, Corpus Christi Police Dep't, Officer, Trial Test., Texas v. DeLuna, No. 83-CR–194-A (Nueces Cty., 28th Dist. Tex. July 15, 1983);

  10. Ruben Rivera, Nueces County Deputy Constable, Trial Test., Texas v. DeLuna, No. 83-CR.194-A (Nueces Cty., 28th Dist. Tex. July 17, 1983);

  11. Joseph C. Rupp, Medical Examiner, Trial, Test., Texas v. DeLuna, No. 83-CR–194-A (Nueces Cty., 28th Dist. Tex. July 21, 1983);

  12. Mark Schauer, Corpus Christi Police Officer, Pretrial Test., Texas v. DeLuna, No. 83-CR–194-A (Nueces Cty., 28th Dist. Tex. June 20, 1983):

  13. Mark Schauer, Corpus Christi Police Officer, Corpus Christi Police Officer, Trial Test., Texas v. DeLuna, No. 83-CR–194-A (Nueces Cty., 28th Dist. Tex. July 18, 1983);

  14. Steve Schiwetz, Prosecutor at Trial of Carlos DeLuna, Opening Statement, Texas v. DeLuna, No. 83-CR–194-A (Nueces Cty., 28th Dist. Tex. July 15, 1983)

  15. Steve Schiwetz, Prosecutor at Trial of Carlos DeLuna, Oral Argument on Pretrial Motion for a Continuance, Texas v. DeLuna, No. 83-CR–194-A (Nueces Cty., 28th Dist. Tex. June 15, 1983);

  16. Statement of Steven Schiwetz, Prosecutor at Trial of Carlos DeLuna, Texas v. DeLuna, No. 83-CR–194-A (Nueces Cty., 28th Dist. Tex. July 18, 1983);

  17. Donald Thain, Texas Dep't of Public Safety Blood Analyst, Trial Test., Texas v. DeLuna, No. 83-CR–194-A (Nueces Cty., 28th Dist. Tex. July 18, 1983);

  18. Mark Wagner, Paramedic, Trial Test., Texas v. DeLuna, No. 83-CR–194-A (Nueces Cty., 28th Dist. Tex. July 15, 1983);

  19. Ernest Dave Wilson, Corpus Christi Police Fingerprint Examiner, Trial Test., Texas v. DeLuna, No. 83-CR–194-A (Nueces Cty., 28th Dist. Tex. July 18, 1983);

Olivia Escobedo, Corpus Christi Police Detective in Wanda Lopez and Dahlia Sauceda Cases, Memorandum to File on Failure to Obtain Elimination Fingerprints (Feb. 8, 1983) at 1 (describing February 7, 1983 directive to Escobedo from prosecutor Jack Hunter to obtain elimination fingerprints from the body of Wanda Lopez, which police had failed to do when the body was in the custody of the County Medical Examiner or in the ensuing few days; Escobedo directed Sgt. O.V. Morales to obtain the prints prior to the February 8, 1983 funeral and burial of Wanda Lopez, and Morales bucked the request to Sgt. Mandy Leal, who was instructed by the funeral home to arrive there at 1:30 p.m. on February 8th, shortly before the funeral would begin; Leal arrived substantially later, after the body had already been taken away "to the funeral site"; no elimination prints were obtained).

Bruce Whitman and James S. Liebman's Notes on Interview with Eddie Garza, Corpus Christi Police Detective (Aug. 25, 2004) at 3 ("I think it was a screwed up damned case. Required a more seasoned investigator. Just because he's arrested under the car, they thought it was open and shut. But where's the evidence?");

see Transcribed Videotape Interview with Eddie Garza, Corpus Christi Police Detective, in Corpus Christi, Texas (Dec. 6, 2004) at 00:45:51:

And when the person is arrested, if that person has anything on his person, whether it be blood stains on his shoes, his soles, whether he took anything from the scene, whether there would be blood that would match the victim's blood that was in there, whether this person had a fight with an individual that might have linked him more closely to the crime, whether he had—what type of clothing he was wearing at the time that he was arrested, that would link him back to the crime scene. You have all types of people walking around different areas of a crime scene. Just because they find somebody hiding somewhere underneath a car, and there's no physical evidence to tie that person to the crime scene itself. I see that a lot of things that did not get done on this particular case that could have been done to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that this person was the actual person that had committed the crime. I think that they left a lot of doubts when the case was presented to the courts.

See also Olivia Escobedo, Corpus Christi Police Detective in Wanda Lopez and Dahlia Sauceda Cases, Supplementary Report (Feb. 5, 1983) ("While still at the [Sigmor station] scene, I learned from Lt. McConley that a suspect had been apprehended and he was brought back to the scene where he was viewed separately by several [sic—two] witnesses who were able to ID the subject. After positive ID was made, suspect who was identified as Carlos DeLuna, 3/15/62 . . . was then transported to City Jail.");

Tamara Theiss's Notes on Interview with Olivia Esobedo, Corpus Christi Police Detective in Wanda Lopez and Dahlia Sauceda Cases (Aug. 25, 2004) at 2:

Because my responsibility was to process the crime scene, I remained in the store working while the rest of the police were outside looking for DeLuna. I remember that there were police cars everywhere, at the station and all around the neighborhood around the station, looking for DeLuna. I could hear their progress on my radio. The police were responding to calls saying that people had spotted someone hiding under a truck that was parked on the street a couple blocks behind the gas station. Then I heard on the radio when DeLuna was pulled out from under the truck. I think that the police brought DeLuna back to the gas station right away so the witnesses could look at him. DeLuna was sober when they found him. He did not have any blood on him. I did not take part in the identification of DeLuna by the witnesses because I was inside the station working on the crime scene.

See Olivia Escobedo, Corpus Christi Police Detective in Wanda Lopez and Dahlia Sauceda Cases, Supplementary Report (Feb. 5, 1983) (stating that Detective Escobedo arrived at the crime scene at 8:15 p.m.; documenting the collection of evidence between 9:25 p.m. and 9:52 p.m.; noting that Escobedo conducted photo arrays with witnesses back at the police station on the night of Feb. 4, 1983);

Corpus Christi Police Dep’t, Ambulance Service Dispatch Report No. 00980 (Feb. 4, 1983) at 1 (noting the ambulance’s time of arrival at the gas station as 8:16 p.m., and departure time (marking the first point when officers were able to get inside the store) as 8:40 p.m.);

supra Chapter 4, notes 115-116 and accompanying text; see also Steve Mills and Maurice Possley, ‘I Didn’t Do It But I Know Who Did,’ Violent Felon Bragged That He was Real Killer, Last of Three Parts, Chi. Trib., June 27, 2006 at 4, available at http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/chi-tx-1-story,0,653915.story?page=5 (“After Lopez was taken to the hospital, evidence technician Joel Infante and Detective Olivia Escobedo began processing the crime scene, a task that was completed in about an hour.”).

Transcribed Videotape Interview with Eddie Garza, Corpus Christi Police Detective, in Corpus Christi, Texas (Dec. 6, 2004) at 00:44:14–00:45:16 ("And there was evidence that was stepped on by the investigator that was at the scene. And to me, if you just stay out of a crime scene and talk to the witnesses outside and secure the scene and just let [the] identification take, whether it be one day, two days, or three days, just to be at that scene, processing the scene, I think that the results of this case would have been totally different.");

Transcribed Videotape Interview with Eddie Garza, Corpus Christi Police Detective, in Corpus Christi, Texas (Dec. 6, 2004) at 01:34:31–01:35:35:

Again, it all goes back to the person that's in charge of the crime scene, the person that is collecting the evidence. If he is not properly trained or has had enough experience in a big homicide like this, they're going to miss some [finger]print area, they're going to miss something in the crime scene. That's why it's always good to protect the crime scene for as long as it may take, whether you need to call in other expert identification people to go to the scene and process the scene, more time would have been needed. What they should have done is they should have secured the scene completely for at least 24 to 48 hours until everything had been gone over to identify the offender that they had to the crime scene.

Transcribed Videotape Interview with Eddie Garza, Corpus Christi Police Detective, in Corpus Christi, Texas (Dec. 6, 2004) at 01:34:31 ("That's why it's always good to protect the crime scene for as long as it may take, whether you need to call in other expert identification people to go to the scene and process the scene, more time would have been needed. What they should have done is they should have secured the scene completely for at least 24 to 48 hours until everything had been gone over to identify the offender that they had to the crime scene.");

Transcribed Videotape Interview with Eddie Garza, Corpus Christi Police Detective, in Corpus Christi, Texas (Dec. 6, 2004) at 01:46:50–01:47:50:

[T]his crime . . . was committed in a small area, it was a small area and there was two or three different parts of that particular room. Most crime scenes, sometimes, are a lot larger, but this crime scene, in itself, was a small crime scene. There was a counter, a front door . . ., a rear storage area, and not much of an area . . . pretty crowded inside of the place because they have different racks here, different racks there. But it's all contained to a small area, I'd say no more than about ten by ten area. And, to me, that was a pretty small crime scene that a lot more evidence that was not collected, that was overlooked, was left at the scene without even collecting.

See supra Chapter 2, notes 10–33, 68–69 and accompanying text; supra Chapter 3, notes 61–62 and accompanying text; supra Chapter 4, notes 6–8, 46–79 and accompanying text.

Transcribed Videotape Interview with Eddie Garza, Corpus Christi Police Detective, in Corpus Christi, Texas (Dec. 6, 2004) at 01:46:50 ("There was a counter, a front door . . ., a rear storage area, and not much of an area . . . pretty crowded inside of the place because they have different racks here, different racks there. But it's all contained to a small area, I'd say no more than about ten by ten area. And, to me, that was a pretty small crime scene that a lot more evidence that was not collected, that was overlooked, was left at the scene without even collecting.").

Transcribed Videotape Interview with Eddie Garza, Corpus Christi Police Detective, in Corpus Christi, Texas (Dec. 6, 2004) at 00:48:34–00:51:55 ("There should have been something because there was enough evidence, whether it be a stain or a bloody footprint. There was enough blood on the floor and on the carpet that would have left an imprint of the shoe that the person was wearing that had actually committed the crime.").

Transcribed Videotape Interview with Eddie Garza, Corpus Christi Police Detective, in Corpus Christi, Texas (Dec. 6, 2004) at 00:44:14–00:45:16 ("And there was evidence that was stepped on by the investigator that was at the scene. And to me, if you just stay out of a crime scene and talk to the witnesses outside and secure the scene and just let [the] investigation take, whether it be one day, two days, or three days, just to be at that scene, processing the scene, I think that the results of this case would have been totally different.");

see also Transcribed Videotape Interview with Jon Kelly, Lawyer for Carlos Hernandez, in Corpus Christi, Texas (Dec. 9, 2004) at 06:58:58–07:02:25:

DeLuna . . . didn't have any blood on him. And, you know, what kind of police work is that? I mean, I've been around enough murder cases, been around enough blood to make anybody vomit. And you stab somebody in an artery or something and people start bleeding like a stuck pig. And it squirts. And it, it—it—You get blood on you. It's hard not to. And I find that somewhat suspect [that there was no blood on DeLuna]. Additionally, I think this case was wrapped up within an hour or two. And it was at night when [Detectives] Eddie [Garza] and Paul [Rivera] weren't working, yeah. If Eddie and Paul were there, they might have viewed it differently. . . . But if I had said to him [Detective Rivera], "Where's the blood, dude." You know, he'd think on that, and he'd come back, he might come back a week later and say, —there wasn't any blood on his shoes, I wouldn't look at him [as a suspect]." The people I think, I heard were involved [conducting the DeLuna investigation] were people that I don't think we're that good. . . . I'm sure there were competent people there, but, you know, you need a lead person. That lead person kind of controls how an investigation goes down. You know, you need to—a solution to a crime is nice, but it's good to make sure you get all the evidence. Cleary, DeLuna in that situation was a man to arrest, but the case didn't need to be wrapped up in an hour. It clearly—This is a capital murder case. This ain't no joke.

Transcribed Videotape Interview with Jon Kelly, Lawyer for Carlos Hernandez, in Corpus Christi, Texas (Dec. 9, 2004) at 07:02:25–07:06:14:

Q. How would you react to the fact that that crime scene was processed over the course of less than two hours, and turned back over to the manager of the gas station that evening, within two hours of the event occurring, to be cleaned out, washed out, and open for business soon thereafter, so that all of that happened at night and there was no investigation done at the scene, possibly during the day or over any course of time beyond two hours? . . .

A. Well, the reaction that one has is that, you know, look: this isn't New York City and this isn't California, but come one now. I mean, how much work could be done. You know, obviously just the description itself begs the answer, doesn't it? I mean, you can close an ice house down for a night and nothing bad is going to happen. Certainly Diamond Shamrock isn't going to go broke. A man's life is at stake. Somebody died. Couldn't you think that's important enough to do it right? Of course not. I mean, it's silly. Return it two hours later? Come on. . . . But, you know, things should have been done maybe in the light of day, just to be sure that it was done right. I don't know who the persons were involved, but that's awful quick, isn't it? You hit that place with pine oil the next—that night, or the next morning, that's lost. All that's lost. Well, I mean, you know. First of all, I represent, I'm more of an emotion person, but come on now. We're talking fingerprints, aren't we? And if there's blood and people get blood on their hands there's going to be fingerprints all over the place, so you're going to be looking for prints. You're going to be looking too . . . for footprints. I mean, just think of the characteristics of tennis shoes, the characteristics of any shoes! Oh, my god, if any of the stuff was being handled, it just, it begs, doesn't it, to have a lot of forensic people there, to have a lot of photographs, to have a lot of fingerprint work. If there isn't, clearly something is seriously, seriously lacking, because if there was a struggle, these people were rolling in it . . . . And you'd be looking for that, certainly on the man that was caught. You'd be looking for blood. If there wasn't, you'd start to wonder, wouldn't you? I mean, that to me, that's the one thing that troubles me about this case is that I don't believe that DeLuna had much blood on him, if any. Well, he didn't go take a bath! And they found him, what? Within half an hour? Well, doesn't that leave one to question what the heck is going on?

Transcribed Videotape Interview with Eddie Garza, Corpus Christi Police Detective, in Corpus Christi, Texas (Dec. 6, 2004) at 00:08:47–00:09:55 ("I reviewed [the file in the Wanda Lopez killing], and, to me, I had my doubts as to the offender that was convicted of the crime, and I believe it was a capital murder case and the person has since been put to death by lethal injection. I have many doubts in regards to the case itself. . . [a]nd the evidence gathered at the scene, the evidence gathered from the person that was convicted of the crime did not add up.");

Transcribed Videotape Interview with Eddie Garza, Corpus Christi Police Detective, in Corpus Christi, Texas (Dec. 6, 2004) at 00:11:06–00:13:37:

And the crime scene itself was really a crime scene that was not gone over. If I would have been investigating this case, I would be extremely careful of how the crime scene was processed, and, to me, the person assigned with the identification division that went to this scene did not do a proper job, especially on a capital murder case. There was many pieces of evidence that could have come into view that were probably completely ignored and overlooked.

Transcribed Videotape Interview with Eddie Garza, Corpus Christi Police Detective, in Corpus Christi, Texas (Dec. 6, 2004) at 01:37:08–01:39:04:

My opinion is all based on experience, experience that I have had and the experience that the investigator in charge of the case has. To me, the investigator that was assigned to this case did not have the ample knowledge of the criminals involved in this deal, had no knowledge of what the people involved in this crime were capable of. She didn't have the proper experience of how to investigate a major crime. The identification person did not have the proper experience in how to deal with a high-crime scene like something that would lead to a capital murder case. To me, it was improperly handled from the investigative part and also the identification part. More time should have been taken at the crime scene. There should have been one or two other experts called to the crime scene before the crime scene was turned over back to the owners of the establishment.

Transcribed Videotape Interview with Eddie Garza, Corpus Christi Police Detective, in Corpus Christi, Texas (Dec. 5, 2004) at 01:39:09–01:41:37:

The crime scene technician was Joel Infante. Joel was in patrol most of the time and later on he got assigned to the identification division. He might have had some experience in lifting prints, but to process a major, major crime scene, I don't think that this person had the proper training, the proper knowledge of what to look for at a crime scene. . . . I don't know exactly how long [Infante] had actually been assigned to the identification section, but I knew him when he was in patrol, and I know that in patrol you just go through the form[al]ities of how to secure a scene and things like that. But to have the proper expertise in a major crime scene, you have to have people that have worked on big major crime scenes and have the knowledge and training on how to recover evidence, how to obtain evidence, how to handle it properly, where to send it, whether you're going to leave it in the local lab or whether you're going to package it up and send it to the Department of Public Safety or even the FBI laboratory. . . . [Infante] had had his problems . . . . I knew of problems that he had in the department.

See Bruce Whitman and James S. Liebman's Notes on Interview with Paul Rivera, Corpus Christi Police Detective (Aug. 25, 2004) at 2 (responding to question about the quality of the DeLuna scene investigation: "I.D. Division was very inefficient at the time; now is better.").

Reached not long after Eddie Garza reviewed the Wanda Lopez scene investigation for the out-of-town investigators, Escobedo told them she was proud of her work on the case and attributed any shortcomings to insufficient resources. Tamara Theiss's Notes on Interview with Olivia Esobedo, Corpus Christi Police Detective in Wanda Lopez and Dahlia Sauceda Cases (Aug. 25, 2004) at 2:

As the lead investigator, my first responsibility was to secure the crime scene. I think I responded around 7 p.m. [sic, 8:15 p.m.] to the scene, and it took me at least three hours to process everything [sic, Escobedo was at the crime approximately two hours]. I had to do everything myself. Back then, we didn't have any crime scene technicians or equipment. The responding investigator had to do everything on his or her own. I remember that all we had was a little kit we carried around in the trunks of our cars. We didn't have any police tape to secure the scenes. We just had to yell at people to stay back and not step on our crime scenes. I think I had the help of a fingerprint technician, but no one else.

See also Tamara Theiss's Notes on Interview with Olivia Esobedo, Corpus Christi Police Detective in Wanda Lopez and Dahlia Sauceda Cases (Aug. 25, 2004) at 3:

I remember feeling very emotional and personally invested in that case because the victim, Wanda Lopez reminded me of myself, a single mother, on her own, working a night shift to make ends meet. Because of my attachment to the case, I recall making sure that we ran down every piece of information we had, to make sure DeLuna would be convicted. [Prosecutor] Ken Botary was just as meticulous . . . . I was proud of the job I did with Wanda Lopez' case. I remember making sure that I ran down every lead and investigated every angle . . . . I saved the newspaper clippings from the case, and especially the articles when DeLuna was executed. Our unit closed that case efficiently and quickly, and got the right result. I'm confident that we go the right person because DeLuna was identified clearly by the eyewitnesses. They were sure he was the right man, so there was no possibility of misidentification. We did a good job with that case, and I remember feeling satisfied that we had gotten rid of a terrible person . . . .

Bruce Whitman and James S. Liebman's Notes on Interview with Eddie Garza, Corpus Christi Police Detective (Aug. 25, 2004) at 3 ("I think it was a screwed up damned case. Required a more seasoned investigator. Just because he's arrested under the car, they thought it was open and shut. But where's the evidence?");

see Email from Allan Bayle, former Scotland Yard Forensic Expert, to James S. Liebman, Professor of Law, Columbia Law School (July 3, 2004) ("The scene appears to have been very poorly examined and the state of the latents should have been photographed first before the lifting technique used. . . . [T]his whole case does appear to be full of mistakes from start to finish.");

see also Transcribed Videotape Interview with Jon Kelly, Lawyer for Carlos Hernandez, in Corpus Christi, Texas (Dec. 9, 2004) at 06:58:58–07:06:14

A. [T]here was an enormous amount of blood found at the scene [of the Wanda Lopez killing]. Additionally . . . [this] was a Sigmor, a convenience store gas station place, and that there were witnesses outside, . . . [and] the eye-witnesses said that the culprit went in a different direction from which, different from which DeLuna was found, and DeLuna . . . didn't have any blood on him. . . . [W]hat kind of police work is that? I mean, I've been around enough murder cases, been around enough blood to make anybody vomit. And you stab somebody in an artery or something and people start bleeding . . . . And it, it-it—You get blood on you. It's hard not to. And I find that somewhat suspect [that there was no blood on DeLuna]. Additionally, I think this case was wrapped up within an hour or two. And it was at night . . . . [T]he case didn't need to be wrapped up in an hour. It clearly—This is a capital murder case. This ain't no joke. . . And if there's blood and people get blood on their hands there's going to be fingerprints all over the place, so you're going to be looking for prints. You're going to be looking too . . . for footprints. I mean, just think of the characteristics of tennis shoes, the characteristics of any shoes! . . . [I] f any of the stuff was being handled, it just, it begs, doesn't it, to have a lot of forensic people there, to have a lot of photographs, to have a lot of fingerprint work. If there isn't, clearly something is seriously, seriously lacking, because if there was a struggle, these people were rolling in [blood] . . . . It's a bloody murder. And you'd be looking for that, certainly on the man that was caught. You'd be looking for blood. If there wasn't [any blood], you'd start to wonder, wouldn't you? . . . [T]hat's the one thing that troubles me about this case is that I don't believe that DeLuna had . . . blood on him . . . Well, he didn't go take a bath! And they found him, what? Within half an hour? Well, doesn't that leave one to question what the heck is going on?

Transcribed Videotape Interview with Eddie Garza, Corpus Christi Police Detective, in Corpus Christi, Texas (Dec. 6, 2004) at 01:53:52–01:54:43:

If I was sitting in a jury, I could not convict, with the evidence that was presented, in court, with the evidence that was collected, I could not assure anyone that that was the person that committed that crime. Unless the person himself had confessed to the crime, and that, to me, it would satisfy me that there was a confession from that particular person. But other than that, if there was no confession or nothing, I would have to have the physical evidence collected at the scene of the crime with . . . linking that particular person to this crime. If I did not have it there is no way I could convict somebody of capital murder in a case.

Transcribed Videotape Interview with Eddie Garza, Corpus Christi Police Detective, in Corpus Christi, Texas (Dec. 6, 2004) at 01:56:07 ("I feel that the supporting evidence that was presented to the court was not sufficient to find him guilty of capital murder and be put to death in this particular crime. There was always a doubt in my mind, there will be a doubt in my mind because, after going through all the evidence that was presented, I don't see how anybody could get a conviction with the evidence that was available to convict Carlos DeLuna of this capital murder case.");

see Transcribed Videotape Interview with Eddie Garza, Corpus Christi Police Detective, in Corpus Christi, Texas (Dec. 6, 2004) at 00:11:06–00:13:37 ("[T]he evidence that was collected at the scene did not, did not prove that Carlos DeLuna had actually committed this crime.").

Transcribed Videotape Interview with Eddie Garza, Corpus Christi Police Detective, in Corpus Christi, Texas (Dec. 6, 2004) at 00:08:47–00:09:55 ("I have many doubts in regards to the case itself because I felt that we had the wrong person that had been executed for this particular crime because of the evidence that was presented in the courts . . . [a]nd the evidence gathered at the scene, the evidence gathered from the person that was convicted of the crime, did not add up.");

Transcribed Videotape Interview with Eddie Garza, Corpus Christi Police Detective, in Corpus Christi, Texas (Dec. 6, 2004) at 00:10:11:

From information that I had received from other informants that Carlos DeLuna, the person that was convicted of the crime, had not done this particular crime. He was arrested, yes, he was arrested by a [Sheriff's Department] constable. In fact, it was the brother [Ruben Rivera] to my partner, Paul Rivera, he was a constable and he is the one that actually arrested Carlos DeLuna, the person that was convicted. He was found hiding underneath a car about a block and a half or so from the scene of the crime. But, later on, like I said, I developed information as to Carlos Hernandez being a person that had actually committed this crime.

Transcribed Videotape Interview with Eddie Garza, Corpus Christi Police Detective, in Corpus Christi, Texas (Dec. 6, 2004) at 01:53:28–01:54:43, 01:56:07 ("Q. Based on your experiences as a police officer, as an investigator, and your evaluation of the police reports, evidence obtained, eyewitness identification, reviewing the crime scene photos, do you believe Carlos DeLuna committed this crime? A. No."; "I've been involved in many of those capital murder cases . . . [and in] this particular case, the person that they put to death, Carlos DeLuna, was the wrong person that was convicted of this crime.").

Transcribed Videotape Interview with Eddie Garza, Corpus Christi Police Detective, in Corpus Christi, Texas (Dec. 6, 2004) at 00:09:55–00:11:03, 00:11:06–00:13:37:

A. . . .I felt that we had the wrong person . . . because of the evidence that was presented in the courts, and . . . the evidence gathered at the scene, the evidence gathered from the person that was convicted of the crime, did not add up. I had other information as to another suspect that was probably involved in the crime . . . .

Q. Who was that other individual?

A. That other individual was Carlos Hernandez, the one that I felt was the one that had committed this particular crime.

Q. And when did you begin to feel that Carlos Hernandez had committed the crime?

A. From information that I had received from other informants that Carlos DeLuna, the person that was convicted of the crime, had not done this particular crime. . . . I developed information as to Carlos Hernandez being a person that had actually committed this crime. . . . It was a few weeks after the crime had been committed and Carlos DeLuna had been arrested and charged with capital murder in regards to this case. The information that we got, that Carlos Hernandez had gotten someone else to take a fall for him in regards to this crime. And the evidence that was collected at the scene did not, did not prove that Carlos DeLuna had actually committed this crime.

Chapter 10
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