Man on trial for child's murder in 1992
HOUSTON (KTRK) -- A man is now on trial in a cold case kidnapping and murder of a child that happened over 20 years ago. DNA testing recently led to an arrest, and now the suspect could face the death penalty if convicted.
The year was 1992 and Diana Garcia and her then-boyfriend had been attacked in their Gulfgate area apartment. The two attackers took her seven-year-old son, Angelo Garcia, Jr.
Six weeks later, his remains were found in a Baytown marsh. Now, 21 years later, Obel Cruz-Garcia is on trial for killing the boy. According to prosecutors, Cruz left Houston for his native Puerto Rico the day after the abduction.
It was DNA that put him at the family's apartment the night of the attack. It was tested recently and Cruz-Garcia was located in a Puerto Rican prison and was brought back to stand trial.
As it turns out, the family had a connection to him. On the stand Tuesday, Diana Garcia's now-husband Arturo Rodriguez explained how he was beaten by two men in ski masks that night 20 years ago. Cruz-Garcia supplied the cocaine that Rodriguez sold.
The defense attorney asked, "Did you ever deny to police that you were a drug dealer?"
"I never denied that," Rodriguez replied.
The defense attorney continued, "So did you tell police you didn't know why someone would assault you and your wife and take her son?"
Rodriguez testified, "If I told them, I don't remember. We didn't have any enemies or anything."
Also scheduled to testify at some point during the trial is the accused killer's alleged accomplice.
local, deborah wrigley
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