Mexican Mafia Involved in Officers Death
Testimony wrapped up Friday in the trial of two Texas Mexican Mafia members accused of gunning down Balcones Heights police officer Julian Pesina, according to mySA.
U.S. District Judge Xavier Rodriguez scheduled closing arguments for Monday in the case of Jesse “Jay” Santibanez and Alfredo “Freddy Low” Cardona. The pair face up to life in prison for racketeering-related murder and gun charges in the death of Pesina, who was ambushed May 4, 2014, outside Notorious Ink, the tattoo shop that he owned with another person.
Forensics witnesses testified that tests showed gunshot residue was on the driver’s side and on the inside of the passenger door of Cardona’s vehicle when he was arrested later.
“It could have been near a weapon fired or something else that came in contact with GS gunshot residue,” Christina Vachon, a forensic scientist with Bexar County Crime Lab, testified under cross examination by one of Cardona’s lawyers, Chris Griffith.
The pair’s former co-defendant, Jerry “Spoooks” Idrogo, testified this week that he drove Cardona’s white Pontiac Sunfire, dropped off Santibanez and Cardona on the side of the tattoo shop and that Idrogo sat in the car talking to Pesina when the pair came out and shot Pesina, who was next to the driver’s side of the car. Idrogo also said the shooters then jumped in the passenger side and he sped away.
The defense rested its case without calling any witnesses, instead opting to try to make light in the prosecution’s evidence and questioning the credibility of Idrogo and another star witness, Cardona’s ex-girlfriend.
According to other testimony, Pesina led a double life, dealing drugs while he was a police officer. Idrogo testified that Pesina fooled his gang into believing Pesina was a member until a drug dealer outed him and leaders ordered him killed.
2014 Crime Facts at a Glance According to the Texas Department of Public Safety:
- There were 913,403 index crime offenses reported with a 20.3 percent clearance rate for Texas in 2014.
- The crime rate for the State of Texas was 3,392.2 index offenses for every 100,000 inhabitants.
- During 2014, Texas law enforcement officers made 878,686 arrests. Of those arrested, 6.6 percent were 16 years of age and under.
- Firearms were used in 63.3 percent of all murders reported.
- There were 65,338 aggravated assaults reported. Of these, 21.3 percent were committed by the use of hands, fists, and also feet; 21.4 percent involved a knife or cutting instrument, and 24.2 percent involved a firearm.
- 185,817 family violence incidents during 2014. There were 201,051 victims and 195,511 offenders.
- There were 18,756 sexual assault incidents reported with 19,834 victims and 19,821 offenders.
San Antonio Wrongful Death Attorneys
In this case, we find that an officer is suspected of dealing drugs as a side job to his police work, which ultimately lead to his death. It is unfortunate that this man had to lose his life despite his involvement in illegal activity. But there are innocent victims that fall prey to the carelessness of others. Families suffer the loss of a loved one and can suffer financial woes as a result of it. Funeral costs lost income, costly hospital bills are a few common damages families endure. If you have a loved involved in wrongful death contact your local San Antonio Wrongful Death Attorneys for assistance in your case.