Man indicted in intoxication manslaughter case

Jessica Priest By Jessica Priest

May 6, 2014 at 12:06 a.m.



A Victoria man has been formerly charged with hitting a pedestrian while driving drunk.

A grand jury returned an indictment on Hector Reyes Garcia, 46, on Thursday.

He is charged with intoxication manslaughter, a second-degree felony; accident involving personal injury or death, a second-degree felony; and criminal negligent homicide, a state jail felony.

Police found Garcia hiding in his brother's house in the 3400 block of East Rio Grande Street in the early morning hours of Feb. 8 and arrested him.

This came after witnesses said about 15 minutes earlier that Garcia struck and killed Natalie Luna, 22, while traveling north in the 500 block of Delmar Drive.

Luna was walking home with friends from Alicia's Nite Club.

Luna's family members suspected afterward that Garcia hit her on purpose because the two had a fight at that same nightclub about a week before.

Criminal District Attorney Stephen Tyler said law enforcement has heard about their relationship.

"But there's a difference between being suspicious about something and having probable cause; there's a difference between being suspicious about something and being able to prove it beyond a reasonable doubt," Tyler said. "I think the three offenses charged I can prove beyond a reasonable doubt."

Garcia acknowledged to officers that he knew he struck Luna but kept driving because he panicked.

He smelled of alcohol, had bloodshot eyes and difficultly balancing, according to a complaint.

His blood was drawn, but Tyler said the results have not come back.

The state is alleging Garcia's car was a deadly weapon.

Prosecutors also are seeking to enhance Garcia's possible sentences because of his criminal record.

In Travis County, he was convicted in 1986 of aggravated assault and criminal attempted burglary of a habitation and in 1992 of robbery.

Garcia also was placed on probation in Harris County in 2010 for evading arrest or detention in a motor vehicle.

Garcia did not appear to have hired or been appointed an attorney as of Tuesday afternoon.



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