Texas father acquitted in murder of drunk driver who killed young sons


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Texas father acquitted in murder of drunk driver who killed young sons

By Julianne Cassidy. CREATED Aug 28, 2014

A Texas father accused of murdering a drunk driver who killed his two sons was acquitted on Wednesday. David Barajas faced the possibility of life in prison. 

"David Barajas, of Alvin, was accused of shooting 20-year-old Jose Banda after the December 2012 accident outside Houston," reports the USA Today. "Banda was found slumped across the front seats of his Chevrolet Malibu with a single gunshot to the head. His blood-alcohol level was more than twice the legal limit."

Banda struck and killed Barajas' two sons -- 12-year-old David Jr. and 11-year-old Caleb -- as they helped push their father's pickup to their home while on a dark county road. Barajas' truck had run out of gas.

Despite circumstantial evidence, "Prosecutors argued that Barajas, who was steering his Ford F-250 at the time of the accident, walked 100 yards to his home, retrieved a .357-caliber pistol and returned to kill Bandas," the USA Today further reports. "But prosecutors produced only circumstantial evidence implicating Barajas."

According to the USA Today, "During the one-week trial, jurors heard a frantic teenage boy tell a 911 operator he saw the boys being crushed and later heard what he said was a gunshot." Adding, "Video from a police car dashboard camera showed Barajas performing CPR on Caleb as his wife cried out for help."

Prosecution witnesses additionally told Barajas' lawyer that gunfire was heard long after Banda was shot and killed. This would support the defense's argument that the killer was still on the loose.

Julianne Cassidy

Julianne Cassidy

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A city girl gone country, Philadelphia-bred journalist Julianne Cassidy relocated to be a Nashville-based digital editor for Scripps Media, Inc.