Murders Suspect D.A. – A murder suspect in Houston will go free because the D.A. office forgot to file proper charges within the 90-day limit after the man’s arrest.
State District Judge Pedro Ruiz ordered Richard Mendoza’s release Monday on bond equivalent to personal recognizance. However, he also ordered Mendoza to wear an electronic monitor to track his whereabouts.
Fort Bend County D.A. John Healey says his office made the mistake and he takes full responsibility for it. Healey says prosecutors didn’t file additional required paperwork because they were awaiting results of DNA tests on bones believed to be the victim’s.
The 26-year-old murder suspect from Fresno, Texas, was arrested in August and accused of the November 2002 shooting death of a 17-year-old friend, Christopher Daigle near Missouri City, Texas, while the pair were on a hunting trip. Daigle’s family says Mendoza thought his friend was flirting with his girlfriend, so he shot him in the back of the head.
“I don’t know how to feel anymore,” the victim’s mother Tracey Gregory told KPRC. “How could they just let him out like that? Who is he going to hurt next?”
The D.A., Healey said even though Mendoza is out on bond, his trial has been put on the fast track, and it is likely he could end up behind bars for good.