|Houston Criminal Defense Attorney Philip Hilder quoted in Associated Press article republished on NPR |
Dad Won't Face Charges In Alleged Attacker's Death
|June 20, 2012 11:56 pm|
SHINER, Texas (AP) — Hearing his 5-year-old daughter crying from behind a barn, a father ran and discovered the unthinkable: A man molesting her. The father pulled the man off his daughter, authorities say, and started pummeling him to death with his fists.
With his daughter finally safe, the father frantically called 911, begging a dispatcher to find his rural ranch and send an ambulance.
"Come on! This guy is going to die on me!" the man is heard screaming on the 911 call. "I don't know what to do!"
A recording of the tape was played during a news conference Tuesday where the Lavaca County district attorney and sheriff announced that the father will not face charges.
In declining to indict the 23-year-old father in the June 9 killing of Jesus Mora Flores, a Lavaca County grand jury reached the same conclusion as investigators and many of the father's neighbors: He was authorized to use deadly force to protect his daughter.
Philip Hilder, a Houston criminal defense attorney and former federal prosecutor, said he would have been surprised if the grand jury had decided to indict the father. Hilder said Texas law provides several justifications for the use of deadly force, including if someone commits a sexual assault.
"The grand jury was not about to indict this father for protecting his daughter," he said.
Authorities said the family had hired Flores before to help with horses on the ranch. He was not born in the U.S. but was here legally with a green card. Attempts to locate Flores' relatives through public records were unsuccessful.
Copyright 2012 NPR
© Associated Press 2012
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