Hardened Criminal Will Not Be Released This Week - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

4/28/2008-East Texas

Hardened Criminal Will Not Be Released This Week

Back in 2004, Juan Carlos Gonzalez Garcia and 7 other men brutally kicked and beat a Sulphur Springs man with a baseball bat.

It set off a passionate cry from a mother and son. Now Juan Garcia's release has been halted. He's in prison with his parole release date blank.

KLTV spoke to TDCJ's spokesperson about how long Garcia will be under their supervision.

"In Mr Garcia's case, he was sentenced to five years in October of 2005. He had been in prison since November of 2004. The five years expires in November of 2009," Michelle Lyons, TDCJ, Spokesperson.

Garcia was scheduled to be out on parole Tuesday or Wednesday of this week, but now another decision must be made before that happens.

"The decision is in the end is actually made by the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles. They look at a number of factors in determining whether or not they will be released on parole," said Lyons.

The board will review letters from the families of both the victim and defendant before deciding when Garcia will be released on parole. In the meantime we wanted to know about his immigration status.

"When they checked they discovered an ICE detainer already there," said Carl Rusnok, ICE Spokesperson.

When ICE officials checked they found a hold already on his account for illegal entry.

"We've got a detainer on him, we are going to be picking him up from state custody and he will be placed in ICE custody. And he has no right to see a federal immigration judge because he is an aggravated felon," said Carl Rusnok. 

Carl said Garcia's deportation depends on whether he fights their custody, but for now ICE will wait.

Authorities are not releasing why Garcia's release was suspended. They are not saying if it is because of the actions of the victim's family, or officials, or the media attention. We just know that Victim's Service Office out of Huntsville made the decision sometime during the last couple of days.

KLTV 7 spoke to Congressman Louie Gohmert late Monday afternoon who said that even though it's not his district he sits on the immigration committee that oversees ICE. His office wanted to make sure Garcia was not released on the streets of East Texas, but into ICE custody.

Danielle Capper, Reporting. dcapper@kltv.com


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