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  1. #1
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    Neighbors defend Texan accused of murdering teen

    Source: news.yahoo.com

    LAREDO, Texas - The trial of a man accused of executing a teen who broke into his home with friends looking for snacks has many in this border city outraged. Not because of the crime, but because the man is facing a murder charge.


    In a state where the right to use deadly force to protect one's life and property is sacrosanct and frontier justice is still sometimes the norm particularly on the violence-plagued Texas-Mexico border prosecutors have to explain the decision to try Jose Luis Gonzalez.

    Even their future boss, the man who is running uncontested for Webb County district attorney in November, disagrees with the decision; he is Gonzalez's defense attorney.

    Gonzalez, a wiry, graying 63-year-old, had endured several break-ins at his trailer in a hard-scrabble community east of town when four boys, ranging in age from 11 to 15, broke into his trailer to rummage for chips and soda in July 2007. Gonzalez was in a nearby building at the time.
    Gonzalez went into the trailer and confronted the boys with a 16-gauge shotgun. The boys, who were unarmed, were forced to their knees, attorneys on both sides say.

    The boys claim they were begging for forgiveness when Gonzalez hit them with the barrel of the shotgun and kicked them repeatedly. Then, the medical examiner testified, 13-year-old Francisco Anguiano was shot in the back at point-blank range. Two mashed Twinkies and some cookies were stuffed in the pockets of his shorts. Another boy, Jesus Soto Jr., now 16, testified that Gonzalez ordered them at gunpoint to take Francisco's body outside.

    Texas law does allow homeowners to use deadly force to protect themselves and their property, and prosecutors and grand juries have generally applied that standard broadly. In June, a grand jury in Houston cleared a homeowner who shot and killed two burglars outside his neighbor's house despite the dispatcher's repeated request that he stay inside his own home.

    "The homeowner's right to defend himself is not what's on trial in this case," said Assistant District Attorney Uriel Druker, speaking of the Gonzalez case. The shooting "was unnecessary and unreasonable, and Texas law doesn't protect that kind of behavior." But folks in this border city scarred by drug violence across the Rio Grande defend Gonzalez's actions. "It's a table topic at coffee shops, not only in Laredo but throughout the region," said Mayor Raul Salinas, who noted that folks tend to have strong opinions about the right to protect themselves here. "There's been some debate."

    Reader responses to articles published on the Laredo Morning Times Web site called Gonzalez's prosecution unfair and blasted the teen, saying Francisco got what he deserved. Food distributor Francisco Hernandez pointed out in an interview with The Associated Press that a homeowner wouldn't know whether the intruders were there "to steal potato chips or to stab you." "He really shouldn't be on trial," Hernandez said.

    Gonzalez could get up to life in prison if he's convicted of first-degree murder. His attorney, Isidro "Chilo" Alaniz, said his client was simply acting in self-defense when he found the boys in the trailer late at night.
    "There is not a day that goes by that Mr. Gonzalez doesn't think about that little boy," Alaniz said. But Gonzalez "feared for his life."

    It was four on one when Gonzalez entered the trailer, Alaniz said. He had the boys on the ground and recognized at least one of them, but Gonzalez thought 13-year-old boy was lunging at him when he fired the shotgun, Alaniz said.

    The case will be Alaniz's last as a criminal defense attorney. The 40-year-old won the Democratic nomination in April and has no Republican opponent for district attorney in the November.

    He said he became Gonzalez's attorney long before he decided to run for office and has stuck with the case because he believes in it. He was asked whether his client would be on trial for murder if he were already in office.

    "That's a good question," Alaniz said. "This case has huge implications for homeowners, gun owners." The trial is expected to wrap up Friday.
    I'm all for using force to defend yourself and your property, but this is taking it too far. If he had killed the kid while he was in the process of stealing, or was at a range where he couldn't tell if he was armed or if he was a threat, I would understand.

    That being said, if the culprit surrenders and you identify him as an unarmed child, and STILL put him on his knees and do him execution style, it's murder and he should be convicted as a murderer.
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    Couldn't agree with you more. I came to this thread ready to defend the guy, but damn that is f'ed up. There was no threat at that point and so there was no reason to kill the kid. The old man was in complete control at that point and should be given the maximum sentence.




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    the kid was unarmed and not dangerous. The measures taken by Gonzalez we murderous and outrageous and should feel the full force for his complete ignorance and unlawful judgment.

  4. #4
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    this is murder pure and simple i hope they FRY the *******

    Im all for Justice etc but this isnt justice this is an Execution

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    That is really ****ty.

    He executed kids. 13?! Just kill him.
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by se7enthsign View Post
    If he had killed the kid while he was in the process of stealing, or was at a range where he couldn't tell if he was armed or if he was a threat, I would understand.
    WTF?! That's even worse! That's freaking cold blooded murder right there. He killed the kid when he thought he was being attacked.

    That being said, if the culprit surrenders and you identify him as an unarmed child, and STILL put him on his knees and do him execution style, it's murder and he should be convicted as a murderer.
    The killing was nothing CLOSE to "execution style".
    Quote Originally Posted by grcswoosh View Post
    There was no threat at that point and so there was no reason to kill the kid. The old man was in complete control at that point and should be given the maximum sentence.
    There was. He was not in complete control.
    Quote Originally Posted by Playstation4life View Post
    the kid was unarmed and not dangerous. The measures taken by Gonzalez we murderous and outrageous and should feel the full force for his complete ignorance and unlawful judgment.
    The man had no way of knowing if they were unarmed. The kid made a threatening move and COULD have been wielding a concealed knife.


    Can ANY of you guys even read? Or did you only read halfway?

    Gonzalez "feared for his life."

    It was four on one when Gonzalez entered the trailer, Alaniz said. He had the boys on the ground and recognized at least one of them, but Gonzalez thought 13-year-old boy was lunging at him when he fired the shotgun, Alaniz said.
    What was the boy doing making a sudden movement? When someone has a gun at you, you do what he freaking says. The kid either panicked (stupid) or was trying to attack the old man (even stupider).

    And anyway meh, I think the kid deserved it. Breaking into homes at the age of 13 for SNACKS, would probably move on to raping and murdering for leisure in a few years time.
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    The old man was stupid, it says he endured a lot of break-in's and if he recognized one of them then if he was going to shoot, he should have shot him in the foot or leg to teach him a lesson, but to kill the kid when he had them on their knees was wrong. Also, if he had break-ins before, he should have tried to at least make his trailer more secure, hell, get a dog if you have to...


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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by kokoriet View Post
    WTF?! That's even worse! That's freaking cold blooded murder right there. He killed the kid when he thought he was being attacked.

    The killing was nothing CLOSE to "execution style".

    There was. He was not in complete control.

    The man had no way of knowing if they were unarmed. The kid made a threatening move and COULD have been wielding a concealed knife.

    Can ANY of you guys even read? Or did you only read halfway?

    What was the boy doing making a sudden movement? When someone has a gun at you, you do what he freaking says. The kid either panicked (stupid) or was trying to attack the old man (even stupider).

    And anyway meh, I think the kid deserved it. Breaking into homes at the age of 13 for SNACKS, would probably move on to raping and murdering for leisure in a few years time.
    The boys claim they were begging for forgiveness when Gonzalez hit them with the barrel of the shotgun and kicked them repeatedly. Then, the medical examiner testified, 13-year-old Francisco Anguiano was shot in the back at point-blank range. Two mashed Twinkies and some cookies were stuffed in the pockets of his shorts. Another boy, Jesus Soto Jr., now 16, testified that Gonzalez ordered them at gunpoint to take Francisco's body outside.
    That one sentence pretty much negates your entire argument. Unless the kid was trying to do a backwards soumersault kick, there was no way he could have been "lunging at him".

    The defense attorney had to come up with some sort of story or justification and this was the best he could come up with...that the kid was lunging at the man and managed to get shot point blank in the back.
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by se7enthsign View Post
    That one sentence pretty much negates your entire argument. Unless the kid was trying to do a backwards soumersault kick, there was no way he could have been "lunging at him".
    No it doesn't, at all. You don't have to be facing someone to lunge at them. A lunge is any movement where you extend one of your legs to move in any direction. Many people will also consider a sudden movement in a threatening manner as a lunge.

    Imagine the old man is standing behind one of the others or at an angle from being behind the kid. The kid does a lunge similar to this:
    http://mattfitzgerald.org/userfiles/...de_Lunge_1.jpg
    while turning his body to bring his arms around to grab the gun or swing a knife. The old man reacts without thinking, points the gun and shoots him in the back.

    And Point-blank range simply means extreme close range. Could have been a meter away, could have been a whole room.

    We don't have all the facts and probably never will, but really, if the old man was a genuine murderer NONE of those kids would have lived.

    Quote Originally Posted by THUGGEDOUT View Post
    he should have shot him in the foot or leg to teach him a lesson, but to kill the kid when he had them on their knees was wrong.
    It was a shotgun. With that many holes in him he'd easily die of blood loss. If he lives he might never walk normally again.

    Then there's the law. Teaching a lesson isn't defending yourself. The old man would probably be in far worse trouble for willfully harming a child with the intention to cripple him than for killing him in self-defense.
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