Monday, January 4, 2010

Abuser dad gets 30 years in rape-slaying of girlfriend's mother (Fort Worth, Texas)

Abuser dad JOSE GUADALUPE VERARODRIQUEZ battered and raped his girlfriend, the mother of their two sons, for the four years they were together. Finally, Mom couldn't take it anymore and fled to a women's shelter. Two weeks later, Mom took the kids to her mother's house, so her mother, the grandmother, could babysit, only to find that the grandmother had been sexually assaulted and beaten to death. Seems Dad was "angry" that Mom had left him, and that the grandmother wouldn't tell him the mom's whereabouts. So he raped and killed her.

Want to know how seriously we take violent crime in this country? Dad was allowed to plead down from a capital murder charge to "burglary of a habitation with intent to commit sexual assault." Seems the cops screwed up the evidence collection and handling, so the prosecutor wimped out. With credit for jail time served since his arrest, Dad could be out on parole in ABOUT 4 YEARS. I shudder to think of this guy out on the streets again.

Man gets 30-year term in 2006 rape-slaying
Posted Tuesday, Dec. 29, 2009


FORT WORTH — Melissa Galvan was just 19 when she fled three years ago to a Fort Worth women’s shelter after the father of her two young sons tried to rape her. As Galvan fought him off, their 3-year-old son began screaming, prompting him to run from the house, she later told police.

Two weeks later, Galvan took her children to her mother’s Forest Hill home so she could baby-sit.

She found her mother, 50-year-old Rosa Maria Reyes, facedown on her bed. She had been raped and beaten to death, police said.

This month, Galvan addressed her former live-in boyfriend, Jose Guadalupe Verarodriquez, in a Tarrant County courtroom after state District Judge Mike Thomas sentenced him to 30 years in prison. Initially charged with capital murder in the May 21, 2006, rape-slaying of Reyes, he could have been sentenced to death or to life in prison without parole.

Instead, Verarodriquez pleaded guilty Dec. 18 to a reduced charge of burglary of a habitation with intent to commit sexual assault.

With credit for the three years he has been in jail since his arrest, Verarodriquez could be eligible for parole in about four years, a prospect that worries Galvan and other family members.

Prosecutor Robert Huseman said problems with the collection and handling of evidence led prosecutors to offer a plea to the lesser charge.

'She was trying to protect me’

In Criminal District Court No. 4, Galvan recounted the abuse she endured during four years living with Verarodriquez, including threats, forced sex, insults and violence, even when she was pregnant.

Galvan, now 23, said her older son witnessed much of the abuse. The younger son was only 6 months old when Verarodriquez was arrested.

Verarodriquez, now 25, didn’t react in court, Galvan said in an interview, when she recalled the horror of finding her mother’s body and the pain she still experiences because of her mother’s death.

"I never imagined that I’d have to attend my mother’s funeral as a teenager," she said. "Losing someone so close is unbearable. My mother’s killer may have taken her life, but he will not take the precious memories I’ll hold in my heart until the day I see her again."

Verarodriquez showed a hint of emotion, Galvan said, when she spoke about their sons and how their grandmother’s death affected them. She said she still hasn’t told her sons that their father killed their grandmother.

"I do know he loved our boys," she said. "He wrote me letters after his arrest asking for pictures of the boys. I never responded, but I know he was really missing the kids."

Galvan said she does not know why Verarodriquez killed her mother but believes that he was angry that she had left him and that her mother refused to tell him where she was.

"She was trying to protect me," she said.

The Tarrant County medical examiner’s office ruled that Reyes was killed by a blow to her head. Three days later, Verarodriquez was arrested based on information from an anonymous tip, police said. He gave police hair and saliva samples and was released. He was arrested again and charged with capital murder in July 2006 after DNA tests linked him to the rape, police said.

Galvan’s sister also addressed Verarodriquez in court and then read a letter from her 13-year-old daughter, who told Verarodriquez that she forgave him despite the pain he caused her family.

"I’ve prayed that you realize that what you did was wrong and that you would change and turn your life around," the girl wrote. "I forgive you, not because you deserve it, but because that’s what Granny would want me to do."