The Fugitive Apprehension Unit made several noteworthy arrests last week.
In Travis County, Jose Antonio Garcia-Barriga was arrested in Austin on an outstanding warrant for Sexual Assault of a Child issued by the Austin Police Department. This arrest was made on Aug. 6 while working in conjunction with the United States Marshals Lone Star Fugitive Task Force out of Austin.
In Travis County, Cesar Ambrosio Sanchez was arrested in Austin on an outstanding warrant for Continuous Sexual Abuse of a Child issued by the Austin Police Department. This arrest was made on Aug. 3 while working in conjunction with the United States Marshals Lone Star Fugitive Task Force out of Austin.
In Galveston County, Ismael Ruiz Jr. was arrested in Galveston on outstanding warrants for Continuous Sexual Abuse of a Child, Sexual Assault and Injury to a Child/Elderly/Disabled issued by the Galveston Police Department. This arrest was made on Aug. 3 while working in conjunction with the Gulf Coast Violent Offender Task Force.
Parents sent to prison in 2015 Fayetteville slaying, sex assault of 3-year-old daughter
Cumberland County, NC – A Fayetteville mother and father were sent to prison Monday for the 2015 sexual abuse and death of their malnourished 3-year-old daughter.
After a week of testimony and just over four hours of deliberation, a Cumberland County jury found Jamarkus Smith, 31, guilty of first-degree murder, taking indecent liberties with a child, intentional child abuse inflicting serious injury, felonious child abuse and two counts of sex offense with a child by an adult in the death of his daughter, Jourdin A’Legacy Smith.
Jourdin’s mother and Smith’s wife, Octavia Bennett-Smith, 32, a former Fort Bragg Army sergeant, pleaded guilty in December 2019.
Testimony in Smith’s trial began July 19, with closing arguments on Friday.
Following the jury verdict, Smith professed his innocence when he addressed the court before sentencing.
“I showed them I was innocent,” he said. “They know I’m innocent, and you know I’m innocent. Everybody here knows. How is that right? At what point is the legal system about justice?”
No statements were made on behalf of Jourdin before Judge Claire Hill sentenced Smith to life imprisonment for the murder and a combined 25 to 35 years for the other charges. He will also be required to register as a sex offender for life.
Smith’s attorney, Kris Poppe, said his client plans to appeal the verdict.
As Smith was escorted from the courtroom Monday, he turned to two women in the gallery who appeared to be there on his behalf and said, “I didn’t do it.”
“I know you didn’t baby,” one of the women said. “He didn’t do that. I don’t care what nobody says. He didn’t do it.”
According to the child’s autopsy report, the cause of death was pneumonia in the setting of malnutrition, neglect and sexual abuse. She weighed just 28 pounds at the time of her death, and her body and genitals were riddled with lacerations and contusions, the report said.
Bennett-Smith’s sentencing came some 30 minutes after her husband’s.
Her defense attorney, Antonio Gerald, called Jourdin’s death a tragedy.
Gerald said that Bennett-Smith accepted responsibility for her role in Jourdin’s death and “agreed to testify and assist in any way to help bring justice for Jourdin.”
Bennett-Smith did not speak during the hearing but cried as she was sentenced to a minimum term 10 years, five months, and a maximum of 13 years, six months for the second-degree murder charge.
The judge declined Gerald’s request for a consolidated sentence and instead stacked the sentence for the other charges.
For the child abuse and sexual assault charges, she received a consecutive minimum sentence of four years, four months, and a maximum of more than 10 years in prison. She will be required to register as a sex offender for 30 years after release.
The judge also recommended a psychological evaluation for Bennett-Smith.
Gerald said that the court heard during her testimony at Smith’s trial that she was also a victim of assault as a child.
“These are not excuses for her actions of what she has pled guilty to, but only to shed some light as to what may have led her to be in this courtroom today,” he said.
Oklahoma man found guilty of disturbing case of Child Abuse
NORMAN, OK – An Oklahoma man has been convicted of several counts of child abuse and sexual assault after he reportedly fled to Hong Kong to avoid the charges.
WARNING – This is more than “disturbing”, this is just more proof of the growing evil, sadistic abuse being inflicted on Our Children day after day. BUT, this is nothing new apparently, since the Justice Department sent a very detailed REPORT TO CONGRESS, August 2010… Just another Brick In The Wall for this Legacy Of Failure. Robert StrongBow
In 2019, Jose Perez Manarang, Jr. was arrested after shocking allegations of child abuse surfaced.
According to court documents, “Manarang would put a plastic trash bag and tie it off around [the child’s] neck until [they] ‘about died.’”
Documents state he would also “spank [the child’s] face until it was swollen” and “kick [the child] in the chest with boots on.”
Once the allegations were reported to police, investigators say Manarang fled to Hong Kong.
He was ultimately brought back to Oklahoma and was charged with two counts of rape, child sexual abuse, lewd molestation or indecent proposal, three counts of child abuse, soliciting a minor for indecent exposure, and two counts of procuring pornography.
During the non-jury trial, Manarang’s defense team rested after calling no witnesses.
Cleveland County District Judge Thad Balkman found Manarang guilty on all counts.
He was sentenced to six life sentences, plus 80 years.
AUSTIN, TX – The Texas Attorney General’s Fugitive Apprehension Unit made several noteworthy arrests last week.
In Travis County, while working with the United States Marshal’s Lone Star Fugitive Task Force, the Fugitive Apprehension Unit arrested Christopher Michael Garcia in Austin on February 23. Garcia had an outstanding warrant for murder issued by the Austin Police Department.
In Ellis County, Brandon Douglas Wilder was arrested in Midlothian on February 23. Wilder had an outstanding warrant for Indecency with a Child Sexual Contact issued by the Midlothian Police Department.
In Smith County, while working with the Joint East Texas Fugitive Task Force, the Fugitive Apprehension Unit arrested Jordan Syncere Hankins in Tyler on February 23. Hankins had an outstanding warrant for Aggravated Robbery issued by the Tyler Police Department.
The Texas Attorney General’s Human Trafficking Unit made one arrest in relation to sexual assault of a child.
In San Patricio County, Gabriel Gonzales, 56, of Mathis was arrested on a sexual assault of a child warrant. This case was received as a tip from the Polaris National Hotline, as well as a request for assistance by the Mathis Police Department. During the investigation, it was determined that in 2020, Gonzales sexually assaulted a child in Mathis. Gonzales was taken into custody without incident and was transported to the San Patricio County Jail with a $40,000 bond.
Preliminary hearing held for 4 people charged with child abuse in Stone County, Missouri
STONE COUNTY, MO – A preliminary hearing was held on Tuesday for four people charged for child abuse back in November.
Dessa A. Barton, 26, W. Dalton McLendon, 26, Kathreine Kost, 56, and Richard A Hilliker, 52, pleaded not guilty to their charges. Each face charges of endangering the welfare of a child and child abuse.
In a hearing that lasted more than three hours, the Stone County Prosecuting Attorney presented various pieces of evidence and called multiple witnesses to the stand. Among witnesses were Stone County detectives as well as the ex-boyfriend of Dessa Barton, who is the mother of the child.
Detectives said the then 4-year-old boy suffered from extreme malnutrition. They also said the young boy spent extended periods of time in a wooden crate constructed of pallets.
On Tuesday Stone County Prosecutor Matt Selby showed a number of photos taken during a search of the home.
Photos showed the crate itself, a make-shift door for the crate as well as blankets and children’s clothing. During testimonies, detectives said Dalton McLendon previously denied using the crate for the child, instead they say McLendon said it was used for a dog.
Detectives who gave testimony also said McLendon admitted to spanking the boy and sometimes using a belt on him. Among the photos shared by Selby was a photo of a belt, which detectives described as “the belt.”
“[McLendon said the child] had this problem where he would pee himself,” Stone County detective Matthew Maggard said.
Maggard also said McLendon told him he had issues trying to get the boy to play with him.
“Dalton said he tried to play with [the child] but he never wanted to play with him because he seemed like a standoff child,” Maggard said in his testimony.
Selby also presented phone records between a few of the four. All four were present during the hearing, but a few of the defense attorneys said some of the evidence did not pertain to each individuals case.
Detectives had also testified that medical personnel told them the child’s injuries were consistent with physical abuse. One detective said the boy was quite skinny when they saw him.
One investigator who gave testimony said Barton told detectives in an interview that she did not know how her son had hurt himself. They said Barton said she believed her son was causing self harm. Detectives said she told them she thought her son need more psychiatric help than medical attention.
Investigators initially received a 911 call on November 6 about the child being unresponsive in a Billings home. Emergency crews transported the him to a Springfield hospital, then airlifted him to a Kansas City hospital.