DA’s Office weighing death penalty in Trooper Sanchez case

The Hidalgo County District Attorney’s Office will be meeting with the family of late Texas Department of Public Safety Trooper Moises Sanchez to talk about whether to pursue the death penalty for the man accused of shooting the trooper.

“Our office has tentatively decided how they want to handle this case, but is meeting with Mr. Sanchez’s wife and family before the decision is made official,” Hidalgo County District Attorney Ricardo Rodriguez said.

He said he could not comment further on the case.

A grand jury indicted 24-year-old Victor Alejandro Godinez on Sept. 19 on a count of capital murder of a peace officer and a count of attempted capital murder of a peace officer.

Godinez, an Edinburg resident, is accused of shooting Sanchez, 48, on April 6 after he fled a car crash the trooper responded to on North 10th Street and Freddy Gonzalez Drive in McAllen.

Authorities have said Godinez fled on food and is accused of shooting Sanchez after the trooper caught up with him in the 1500 block of South Maltese in Edinburg.

He had been shot twice, once in the shoulder and once in the head.

The suspect is also accused of shooting at two Edinburg police officers who eventually apprehended him east of Mon Mack Road and State Highway 107. Neither officer was injured and police recovered a .357 revolver authorities say Godinez used in the shooting.

Sanchez went through months of surgery and rehabilitation following the shooting, and through updates provided to DPS by the family, it appeared he may recover.

He died, however, on Aug. 24 following surgery.

The two-count indictment against Godinez accuses him of shooting and killing Sanchez and shooting at Edinburg Police officer Sandra Tapia.

Court records do not reflect an arraignment date for Godinez, who remains jailed on $3 million in bonds on three counts of attempted capital murder.