Caller-Times Interactive: NEWS
Friday, Feb. 16, 1996

Suspect in shooting brought back to Sinton

Officers used information about the 18-year-old's relatives to arrest him in San Marcos

By JEN DESELMS
Staff Writer

SINTON -- An 18-year-old murder suspect arrested in San Marcos was returned to Sinton Thursday where he is jailed on a murder charge in connection with a Wednesday night shooting.

Police still were searching for the gun used in the shooting death of 20-year-old Rosalio Molina.

Matthew Garcia remained at the San Patricio County Jail Thursday night with bond set at $200,000 by Precinct 1 Justice of the Peace Frank Patrova.

Molina, of Sinton, died of a gunshot to the head about 7:40 p.m. Wednesday at Memorial Medical Center after being airlifted by HALO-Flight to the hospital, authorities have said.

Sinton Police Chief Joe Schumann said the two men and several other people had been barbecuing earlier in the day. One witness told police that there was some tension and the two men appeared to be staring at one another, Schumann said.

Police said the investigation so far indicates that the suspect believed that the victim was interested in his wife.

An argument followed and Molina was shot at about 6 p.m. in the suspect's apartment at a complex in the 700 block of Avenue D in Sinton, Schumann said.

Hayes County deputies arrested Garcia about 10 p.m. Wednesday, Schumann said. Authorities believed he might be in the San Marcos area because he had relatives there. Hayes County deputies had been given a license plate number and a description of the vehicle Garcia was believed to driving, Schumann said. Deputies stopped the car as Garcia was driving in the direction of a relative's home, he said.

Sinton police also were aided by the Texas Rangers, San Patricio County sheriff's deputies and Department of Public Safety officers, Schumann said.

Police still are searching for a .380-caliber semiautomatic pistol they believe was used in the shooting.

Molina's death was the city's first homicide in 1996. The city's last homicide was tried last week. In that case, Jose Francisco Torres, 25, of Corpus Christi was convicted in the fatal stabbing of Guadalupe Cancino, 50, during a May 12 confrontation at the Tigers Club in Sinton.

The eight-woman, four-man jury returned with a 10-year sentence that they asked be served as probation. Jurors also imposed a $2,500 fine.

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