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  1. #1
    Senior Member butterbean's Avatar
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    Feb 2005


    By: CASEY KNAUPP, Staff Writer June 13, 2005

    By: CASEY KNAUPP, Staff Writer June 13, 2005

    Crystal Garcia claims she has changed since July 1, 1999 - the day she and other alleged gang members robbed, beat and stabbed a teenager to death.

    Convicted of the capital murder of Adam Carrier when she was 14, Ms. Garcia will turn 21 next month. Although the Texas Youth Commission recommended that she be released on parole instead of transferred to an adult prison, Smith County Court at Law Judge Floyd Getz upheld the 20-year determinant sentence that was initially assessed.

    Ms. Garcia will have to serve a minimum 10-year sentence for the crime, Assistant District Attorney Jeff Sanders said.

    A tearful Ms. Garcia testified Monday that in the five years she's been in TYC, she has obtained her GED, completed 12 hours of college credit, worked in the cafeteria and now works off campus at the McDonald's in Giddings.

    She said she understood the seriousness of the crime and her involvement, admitting that she hit the victim with a crowbar, kicked him when he was down, stole his wallet, supplied the knife used to stab him and wiped off fingerprints.

    Ms. Garcia testified against co-defendants, who were convicted of capital murder and sentenced to life in prison. The defendant, who could have been sentenced up to 40 years, said she didn't testify for a plea deal and she would do it again.

    "I'm not testifying for myself ... I'm testifying for Adam and Adam's family and for Aaron (Warren) and Aaron's family," she said, adding that she couldn't change what she did but that she owed it to Carrier.

    Susana Arroyo is in Mexico awaiting extradition for her capital murder trial. She and Hersain Gomez, who pleaded guilty in May, were brought back from Mexico after they were on the lam for years before they were caught. Armando Hinojosa, Michael Thompson and Christina Martinez were all convicted and sentenced to life in prison.

    Ms. Garcia said she has changed a lot and she no longer associates with any gang members.

    Carrier's mother, Jackie Barr, testified that she didn't agree with Ms. Garcia only serving one-half of the minimum sentence. She commended her for testifying and said it looked as if she had a good start toward making a better life for herself. But, she said, people get five years for traffic offenses. Ms. Garcia will get to spend birthdays and Christmas with her family after she is released while Mrs. Barr spends the holidays and Carrier's birthdays visiting the cemetery.

    "Adam was taken away from us forever," she said.

    Leonard Cucolo, court liaison for TYC, testified that Ms. Garcia accomplished many important therapeutic tasks and has done everything asked of her. The commission had difficulty with the juvenile initially but she has since completed a chemical dependency program, as well as a capital offender program, which requires her to undergo an intense examination of her life story and the crime story. He recommended that she be sent to a halfway house on intensive supervision.

    Defense attorney Steve Hubbard said Ms. Garcia would be on parole until 2019. His client has done everything in her power to change her behavior, her attitude and more importantly, those she hangs around with, he said.

    Chief Felony Prosecutor April Sikes said two of the factors considered for early release - the nature of the offense and the manner in which it was committed - demand Ms. Garcia continue to be committed.

    Five years is never appropriate for this type of offense, she said.

    "Make sure she (Ms. Garcia) continues to pay the price that she was initially assessed," she said.

    Getz said he agreed that five years was inappropriate for the nature and manner of the crime - a gang-related capital murder. He said Ms. Garcia knew there was going to be a robbery that night and aided others in the murder.

    "Justice does require that Ms. Garcia finish the 20-year determinant sentence," he said.

    Ms. Garcia began sobbing loudly after the decision. About a dozen of her family members were in the courtroom.

    Carrier, 18, and Warren, 18, were visiting East Texas with Carrier's mother. On July 1, 1999, they reportedly met six Hispanics at Kilo Land Park in Henderson County. The group left in two vehicles and went to a remote wooded location in the 200 block of Skidmore Lane in Smith County, where the groups separated and Carrier's tire was cut.

    Prosecutors have said as Carrier tried to change the flat tire, Gomez picked up the spare and beat him over the head. Carrier tried to fight back but Ms. Arroyo began hitting him repeatedly with a tire tool. Gomez and Ms. Arroyo allegedly dragged Carrier into the woods, stabbed him multiple times and cut his throat.

    Casey Knaupp covers county, state and federal courts. She can be reached at 903.596.6289. e-mail: news@ty

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  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Once you've's in you because it was there to begin with.

    She's working at McDonalds?

    Thanks for letting me know.

    Adios Big Mac!!

    Have these people no sense?

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