HRLR
Los Tocayos Carlos
Chapter 6
Page: 11 of 17
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Although everyone feared Carlos after he returned to Corpus in 1978 on parole, that wasn’t the case during his five-year stint behind bars. According to Freddy Schilling, when his young brother-in-law was first arrested for the Circle K jobs and locked up in the local jail, “they raped him.” “I know he was sexually abused.”

Schilling heard that Carlos then spent the duration of his time in the state pen as “what they call a punk. . . . I don’t know how true it is, or what,” continued Schilling, “but this is what I heard.”173 The intake report at the time Carlos was first admitted to prison described him as “weak” and said he “may easily be taken advantage of by older and/or more aggressive inmates.”174

Clearly, prison made an impression on Hernandez. Two years into his parole, while in jail being interrogated about the murder of a young woman named Dahlia Sauceda, he was taped on a jail phone pleading with Fidela to get him out of custody. At the trial of a man subsequently charged with the crime, Carlos was asked why he was so upset during the call. The twenty-five-year-old admitted being on the verge of tears and begging his unsympathetic mother in Spanish to “remember what they did to me.”175

“I was referring to when I was in the penitentiary,” Carlos explained.176 He admitted he was “afraid to go back to the pen” and would “lie to the police” if necessary to stay out.177

Judging from this rare window into a private moment of weakness, and from Hernandez’s public behavior after leaving prison, he adopted three strategies for staying out of the penitentiary and avoiding what happened to him there. Use a knife, not a gun. Never again leave any witnesses. Exploit every weakness of others, but don’t expose your own.

* * * * *

Between his parole on the armed robbery convictions in 1978 and his last trip to prison in 1996, Carlos Hernandez was arrested about two dozen times. At no point was he ever found with a gun or bullets or charged with using them in a crime.

Over half the time, however—starting with his first post-prison arrest in July 1978 for public drunkenness and a second in August 1978 for assaulting someone in a bar—Carlos was carrying a knife or had used one to commit the crime.178

Typically, the weapon was a “lock blade buck knife.”179 Asked to explain to a jury how the knife worked, Hernandez described a long blade lodged inside a wooden handle, which automatically locks into a fixed-blade buck knife when you open it. The reason he preferred it to a pocket knife, Carlos testified, was that it won’t fold over and cut you when you use it to cut something else.180

Carlos’s July and August 1978 arrests were typical in another way. Although Hernandez’s possession of a knife, use of alcohol, and commission of crimes all violated his parole conditions, the Parole Board let him off with a reprimand and didn’t send him back to prison.181 In October 1978, he was “continued on parole” again after police arrested him for “evading arrest.”182

Transcribed Videotape Interview with Freddy Schilling, in Corpus Christi, Texas (Feb. 24, 2005) at 14:43:42:

I know that when he was arrested, he was arrested for some armed robberies, Circle K’s, convenience stores. . . . They caught up with him and he got locked up. Being locked up here at the county jail, I know that he was sexually abused, that they raped him. And my understanding is that throughout his duration in the prison, [he was] what they call a punk. . . . I don’t know how true it is, or what, but this is just what I heard.

Admission Summary, Tex. Dep’t of Corrections (Nov. 6, 1972) at 2.

Carlos Hernandez, Trial Test., Texas v. Jesse Garza, No. 79-CR–881-C (Nueces Cty., 94th Dist. Tex. Jan. 31, 1980) at 931–32.

Carlos Hernandez, Trial Test., Texas v. Jesse Garza, No. 79-CR–881-C (Nueces Cty., 94th Dist. Tex. Jan. 31, 1980) at 931–32.

Carlos Hernandez, Trial Test., Texas v. Jesse Garza, No. 79-CR–881-C (Nueces Cty., 94th Dist. Tex. Jan. 31, 1980) at 1048.

See, e.g., Arrest Sheet No. 10920 for Carlos Hernandez, Corpus Christi Police Dep’t (July 29, 1978) at 1 (arresting Carlos Hernandez for public intoxication and for violating a weapons ordinance by having a fixed blade knife on him);

Arrest Sheet No. 11515 for Carlos Hernandez, Corpus Christi Police Dep’t (Aug. 19, 1978) (arresting Carlos Hernandez for assault);

Arrest Sheet No. 30803 for Carlos Hernandez, Corpus Christi Police Dep’t (Jan. 10, 1980) at 1 (arresting Carlos Hernandez for outstanding warrants);

Arrest Sheet No. 59662 for Carlos Hernandez, Corpus Christi Police Dep’t (Oct. 26, 1981) at 1 (arresting Carlos Hernandez for threatening his girlfriend with a knife);

Arrest Sheet No. 83758 for Carlos Hernandez, Corpus Christi Police Dep’t (April 3, 1983) at 1, (arresting Hernandez, who was carrying a knife, for an active warrant);

Arrest Sheet No. 12834 for Carlos Hernandez, Corpus Christi Police Dep’t (April 17, 1985) at 1–2 (arresting Hernandez for public intoxication on a bicycle and indicating he carried a knife);

Arrest Sheet No. 13747 for Carlos Hernandez, Corpus Christi Police Dep’t (May 9, 1985) at 1–2 (arresting Hernandez for an active warrant and indicating he had a knife);

Arrest Sheet No. 26265 for Carlos Hernandez, Corpus Christi Police Dep’t (March 27, 1986) at 1–2 (arresting Hernandez with two knives);

Arrest Sheet No. 31365 for Carlos Hernandez, Corpus Christi Police Dep’t (July 24, 1986) at 1–2 (arresting Hernandez with two knives);

Arrest Sheet No. 38884 for Carlos Hernandez, Corpus Christi Police Dep’t (Jan. 21, 1987) at 1–2 (arresting Hernandez with two knives);

Arrest Sheet No. 43426 for Carlos Hernandez, Corpus Christi Police Dep’t (May 5, 1987) at 1–2 (arresting Hernandez for an outstanding warrant);

Arrest Sheet No. 46352 for Carlos Hernandez, Corpus Christi Police Dep’t (July 16, 1987) at 1–2 (arresting Hernandez with two knives);

Arrest Sheet No. 68362 for Carlos Hernandez, Corpus Christi Police Dep’t (April 15, 1989) at 1–2 (arresting Hernandez with two knives);

Arrest Sheet No. 48855 for Carlos Hernandez, Nueces Cty. Sheriff’s Dep’t (Sept. 14, 1994) at 1 (arresting Hernandez for public intoxication).

Arrest Sheet No. 10920 for Carlos Hernandez, Corpus Christi Police Dep’t (July 29, 1978) (stating Hernandez “had a fixed blade knife on him”);

Arrest Sheet No. 11515 for Carlos Hernandez, Corpus Christi Police Dep’t (Aug. 19, 1978).

Carlos Carlos Hernandez, Trial Test., Texas v. Jesse Garza, No. 79-CR–881-C (Nueces Cty., 94th Dist. Tex. Jan. 31, 1980) at 943–45:

Q. What is a locked blade knife?

A. I believe it’s a buck knife, sir. . . . .

Q. Well, what do you mean by a locked blade; does the blade, once you open it, that’s not a locked blade, is that right?

A. No, sir, it’s not.

Q. Does it have just one blade?

A. Yes, sir.

Q. So this knife here, if it were a locked blade, it wouldn’t close up, right?

A. It wouldn’t close up.

Q. You would just lock the blade.

A. It would lock by itself. . . . It won’t bend. . . . .

Q. That is not the knife you had?

A. No, sir, it’s not.

Q. Yours was a locked blade; that’s why you remember it so well?

A. Yes, sir.

Board of Pardons and Paroles Minutes, Tex. Dep’t of Corrections (Aug. 28, 1978) at 6 (“Continue on parole with a letter and Reprimand . . . for violation of parole rules #4(a), 5 and 7 [which, respectively, forbid parolees to possess alcohol, carry a weapon, and violate the criminal law].”);

see also Arrest Sheet No. 10920 for Carlos Hernandez, Corpus Christi Police Dep’t (July 29, 1978) at 1 (stating Hernandez “had a fixed blade knife on him”);

Arrest Sheet No. 11515 for Carlos Hernandez, Corpus Christi Police Dep’t (Aug. 19, 1978) at 1.

Board of Pardons and Paroles Minutes, Tex. Dep’t of Corrections (Sept. 20, 1978) at 6 (stating Hernandez remains on parole “pending adjudication of charges”);

see also Arrest No. 09459, Nueces Cty. Sherrif’s Dep’t (Oct. 19, 1978) at 1 (arresting Hernandez for evading arrest).

Chapter 6
Page: 11 of 17