Hearing expected Monday afternoon to possibly remove Nueces Co. prosecutors from murder case

Posted at 10:30 AM, May 15, 2017
and last updated 2017-05-15 11:30:10-04

The man accused of killing a woman whose body was found months later in an abandoned home, could find out soon whether the Nueces County District Attorney and the Assistant District Attorney will be removed from his case.

Joseph Tejeda is charged with murder in the death of Breanna Wood. During a hearing on May 5th, Tejeda’s attorney, Fred Jimenez, told Judge Jack Pulcher, he wanted District Attorney Mark Gonzalez, and Assistant District Attorney Matthew Manning removed because Manning, who was a defense attorney at the time, was involved in a burglary case involving Tejeda. The judge is hearing Jimenez’s motion to disqualify the Nueces County District Attorney’s office this Monday morning.

During the May 5th hearing, Prosecutor Melissa Madrigal assured Judge Pulcher that Mr. Gonzalez was off the case. She stated attorney Eric Flores was named attorney pro-tem in the case.

The D.A.’s office told the judge they had recused themselves from the burglary case. Gonzalez stated he’d never met with Tejeda and never spoke to Manning about the burglary. He stated Manning was appointed to the case before the election. He represented Tejeda during one court-appointed appearance on a bond reduction hearing. Shortly after that hearing, Gonzalez won the election and Manning, who was appointed to be his Assistant District Attorney, withdrew himself from the case.

Also, during that hearing, Judge Jack Pulcher ordered the D.A.’s office and Tejeda’s attorney in the burglary case, Eric Flores, to turn over any documents, which prove there isn’t a conflict of interest between the D.A.’s office and Tejeda, to defense attorney Fred Jimenez. Judge Pulcher said the documents had to be given to Jimenez by May 5th at 5 p.m. Later that day; the court was notified that the D.A.’s office was having trouble transferring information onto DVDs. So, Judge Pulcher pushed their deadline to Tuesday, May 9th at 5 p.m.

The judge had ordered them to appear in court to go over the evidence Monday, May 15th at 9 a.m. Because of several cases in the 105th, Judge Pulcher pushed Tejeda’s hearing to 1:30 p.m.