RAILROADED FOR PROTECTING AMERICA
By Jon Christian Ryter
February 6, 2007
On April 14, 2005, exactly 56 days after Mexican drug smuggler Osvaldo Aldrete drove a van loaded with 743 lbs of marijuana across the Mexican border into Fabens, Texas and was almost apprehended by Border Patrol agents Jose Alsono Compean and Ignacio Ramos, Edwards County, Texas Sheriff's Deputy Guillermo "Gilmer" Hernandez was also having his date with destiny.
A few minutes before shift's end at midnight a speeding blue Chevy Suburban ran a stop sign at the only intersection in Rocksprings, Texas. Rocksprings is a trouble spot where illegal aliens and drug smugglers cross into the United States from Mexico. Hernandez glanced at his watch and shook his head. He'd rather go home. But, he shrugged his shoulders and flipped on his lights. The Suburban pulled over. Hernandez could tell there were several people in the vehicle and suspected someone was transporting illegal human cargo.
With his hand on the butt of his holstered weapon, Hernandez got out of his patrol car and approached the vehicle. As he walked towards the drivers' window, the driver threw the car into gear, and turned sharply towards him in an attempt to run him down. Hernandez jumped out of the way. In that instant he knew he'd stopped a "load vehicle"—a vehicle loaded with illegals or drugs or, worse, terrorists. As the Suburban sped off into the dark, Hernandez drew his weapon and fired several shots at the vehicle's rear tires. One shot blew out the left rear tire. However, unknown to Hernandez at the time, two of the bullets he fired richoted off the pavement and punctured the rear door, fragmenting as they entered the vehicle. The fourth shot also penetrated the vehicle.
With one tire flattened, the driver, still traveling at a high rate of speed, attempted to maneuver a hard turn onto a dirt road. He lost control and crashed into an H-brace that was anchored into the ground. Eight illegals and the "coyote" (the driver who is paid to smuggle illegals into the country) bolted from the car. Left behind was one woman, Maricela Rodriguez Garcia, who caught a bullet fragment in her mouth. The lead splinter cut her lip and broke two teeth.
Hernandez's bad luck started when the Sheriff discovered the video camera in Hernandez's patrol car caught none of the evening's activities because the video tape was already full and should have been changed. His bad luck continued when he filled out his report and US Attorney Johnny Sutton found what he decided, with a little legal manipulation, could be construed as an attempt by Hernandez to conceal the facts. When he completed his report of the incident, Hernandez noted that the Suburban tried to run his down and then flee, he fired his "...weapon one time at the back left rear tire." He noted that when the vehicle did not stop, he fired two more shots. Crime scene investigators found four shell casings at the scene. Hernandez's magazine was missing four cartridges.
US Attorney Johnny Sutton ordered the arrest of Hernandez on June 6, 2005. Hernandez was relieved of his duties as a deputy sheriff and transported to Del Rio, Texas where he was held for trial for violating the civil rights of an illegal alien—Garcia—who broke the law by being in the country, and was part of a group who tried to kill the deputy. That was the point made by Congressman Ted Poe [R-TX] made on the floor of Congress seeking a presidential pardon for Hernandez. POE detailed the events that transpired around midnight on April 14, 2005 into the Congressional Record, and then in disgust, told Speaker Nancy Pelosi: "The vehicle stops," Poe said, "and eight or nine illegals jump out and take off running into the sagebrush. One illegal had a minor injury form a bullet. The US government rounds up six or seven of the illegals and—guess what? [They prosecute] Deputy Hernandez, claiming he recklessly discharged his firearm—and uses illegals as witnesses against the lawman during the trial."
That, of course, is precisely the strategy Sutton used in the government's case against Ramos and Compean. Sutton gave drug smuggler Osvaldo Aldrete immunity from prosecution for drug smuggling to testify that the two border patrol agents recklessly discharged their firearms and wounded him. Poe told the Speaker that "...this is another example of how the federal government is more concerned about people illegally invading America than it is about the men who protect America. Once again, our government is on the wrong side of the border war."
Sutton's trial prosecutor, Assistant US Attorney Bill Bauman—in an attempt to make Hernandez appear to be a trigger-happy rogue cop—told the jury that Hernandez may have fired as many as six times at a fleeing vehicle that posed no threat to him. Yet, the prosecution knew that only four pieces of brass were recovered—and only four cartridges were missing from the deputy's automatic weapon. Nevertheless, they assumed Hernandez could have fired more since, in his report, he swore he'd only fired three times, and a fourth brass was found. Maybe there were even more. Bauman chose to believe two illegal aliens who claimed that as they crashed, Hernandez fired two more shots into their car.
The FBI and the Texas Rangers who did the initial investigation used dogs and metal detectors trying to find the additional two shell casings. There were none because only four shots were fired. Yet the prosecution chose to believe criminals rather than a law enforcement officer whom an entire Texas town says is honest and trustworthy. And, of course, the only testimony used against Ramos and Compean was the testimony of a known drug dealer who tried to smuggle 743 lbs of marijuana—worth a million dollars—into the country. The only lawbreaker in that trial was the witness whose perjury convicted two honest cops. And, in the case of Gilmer Hernandez, the perjured testimony of illegals was used to convict another honest cop protecting our borders from illegals who have no right to be here.
While Hernandez's lawyer, Jimmy Parks, Jr. stated the shooting was justified because the human smuggler attempted to strike the deputy with a moving vehicle, Bauman argued that they didn't make a big thing over the fact that the people in the vehicle were illegals since "...they are people, and the Constitution protects people." In Sutton's world, the Constitution protects everyone except those the White House wants to make an example out of.
When Edward County Sheriff Donald Letsinger was called to the scene of the incident on April 14, he called the Texas Rangers to investigate his deputy who he knew had done his job. Rangers interviewed Garcia and two other women they captured in the brush, Ivonne Hernandez Morales and Candido Garcia Perez who told authorities they each paid the coyote $2,000 to be taken to Austin, Texas from Acuna, Mexico. Later they changed their story and said the coyote was actually only a guide who was taking them on a trip to Austin and Dallas.
After the guilty verdict Letsinger told the media that Sutton's people offered Hernandez probation in exchange for a guilty plea. Letsinger said: "This young man didn't do anything wrong and wasn't about to say he had. I think that speaks to his character." Letsinger also said he called the Mexican Consulate because he had arrested and was holding Mexican nationals. The consulate called the FBI and also notified the White House of President Vicente Fox's desire to "fix" the situation. The White House called the Attorney General and Alberto Gonzales called Sutton. Once that call was made, a local arrest became a national concern.
Attorney Johnny Sutton is plugged into the power structure of the Bush
Administration and has very close ties with both Bush-43 and Gonzales.
Sutton is one of Bush's "can-do" guys. Sutton, a former assistant District
Attorney in Harris County, Texas, hitched his wagon to Bush's star in
1995. When Bush won the presidency, Sutton was the policy-coordinator
for the Bush-Cheney transition team. He went to Washington, DC as an
Associate Deputy US Attorney General and, in November, 2001, Bush appointed
him US Attorney for the Western District of Texas with 118 lawyers under
him. It has been rumored along Pennsylvania Avenue that Bush will attempt
to appoint Sutton to the federal bench before he leaves office on January
© 2007 Jon C. Ryter - All Rights
[Read "Whatever Happened to America?"]
Jon Christian Ryter is the pseudonym of a former newspaper reporter with the Parkersburg, WV Sentinel. He authored a syndicated newspaper column, Answers From The Bible, from the mid-1970s until 1985. Answers From The Bible was read weekly in many suburban markets in the United States.
Today, Jon is an advertising executive with the Washington Times. His website, www.jonchristianryter.com has helped him establish a network of mid-to senior-level Washington insiders who now provide him with a steady stream of material for use both in his books and in the investigative reports that are found on his website.
Sutton gave drug smuggler Osvaldo Aldrete immunity from prosecution for drug smuggling to testify that the two border patrol agents recklessly discharged their firearms and wounded him.