Mark Reagan

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Mark Reagan is a reporter for The Monitor. He can be reached at mreagan@themonitor.com or at (956) 683-4437.

Two men arrested for holding Edinburg woman against her will

Two men remain jailed after Edinburg police allege they held a woman hostage as collateral during a drug deal. Investigators arrested 23-year-old San Juan resident Roman Jay Rubalcaba and 36-year-old Alamo resident Manuel Guilbe Rivera on July 10 after a traffic stop in the 2600 block of Agave Avenue. Both men face charges of aggravated kidnapping with a deadly weapon and various drug charges. The arrests happened after an unknown caller alerted Edinburg police to a burglary in progress on Agave Avenue that involved a red Dodge Charger and people with weapons. Read the full story at themonitor.com

Lawsuit: San Juan misrepresented trade-in value of fire truck

A Florida-based company that sells firetrucks has sued the city of San Juan alleging the municipality misrepresented the value of a ladder truck when it traded it in for a new one. Hall-Mark Fire Apparatus-Texas LLC filed a lawsuit against the city on Tuesday, alleging city officials told the company the 2006 HP75 ladder truck it was trading in for a 2016 HP78 ladder truck had only 3,224 miles on it when in truth it had in excess of 100,000 miles, according to the lawsuit. The deal went down in 2017 and the city of San Juan told the company that the vehicle's odometer was the original one and that the mileage was accurate. Read the full story at themonitor.com

High court sides with Mission police in excessive force suit

With a single word, "affirmed," the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a nearly year-old order dismissing a federal lawsuit filed by a Winter...

Pharr police busts alleged smugglers at Red Roof Inn

A Mexican man trying to enter the country illegally told federal investigators he just wanted to go to Arkansas to be with his family. However,...

Ruling: False assassination hoax of fed judge no reason for re-sentencing

In early 2019, the U.S. Marshals briefed U.S. District Judge Randy Crane on what it initially appeared to be terrifying news. People in Mexico were planning to assassinate the judge. Thankfully, a cooperating defendant in a cocaine case named Ismael Lechuga, who was facing up to life in the Bureau of Prisons for drug trafficking, decided to warn the U.S. Marshals of the alleged plot in an effort to see his sentence reduced. Read the full story at themonitor.com

Sheriff’s office partners with UTRGV to test employees

The Hidalgo County Sheriff's Office reports that 46 of its employees have tested positive for coronavirus since April 1 with about half that number learning they've fallen ill with the virus in the last two weeks. And as cases of COVID-19 surge here, Hidalgo County Sheriff J.E. "Eddie" Guerra said his office has partnered with the University of Texas-Rio Grande Valley for a mobile testing site for deputies and staff at the sheriff's office. "So, we partnered with UTRGV and now we have the medical staff from the detention side, RNs (registered nurses) and LVNs (licensed vocational nurses) that are capable of taking the swabs, so now we're doing it ourselves," Guerra said. "So now any Hidalgo County Sheriff's Office employee who has symptoms or comes in direct contact with someone who is COVID positive, we now have the ability to test them here and get the samples over to the lab and get the results back in 24 hours." Read the full story at themonitor.com

Pharr man shot and killed during struggle over gun

A 41-year-old man who died after being shot on July 4 was killed during an argument with his girlfriend over who owned a handgun. Three days later, Pharr police arrested 36-year-old Mercedes resident Cindy Nohemi Rico and charged her with manslaughter for the death of 41-year-old Jose Juan Mendez, municipal court and police documents show. Police responded to 102 Every Way at 8:37 a.m. that day in referece to a man with a gunshot wound to his neck, a probable cause affidavit stated. Read the full story at themonitor.com

McAllen asks AG to shield dash cam of officer-involved shooting

A Texas Public Information Act request reveals that there is no body camera footage showing the June 28 incident where a 13-year veteran of the McAllen Police Department shot a 29-year-old Palmview man three times. There is, however, dash camera footage depicting the incident, but the city of McAllen has sent a letter to the Texas Attorney General's Office asking for an opinion that it may withhold the video from public view. The officer, Marcos Jimenez, shot Rodolfo Rivera in the upper right shoulder, right arm and upper left leg after authorities say he threw bricks at officers responding to a burglary call, according to police. Read the full story at themonitor.com

State will not seek death in murder of mother, son

Prosecutors have announced they will not seek the death penalty against two Edinburg residents accused of beating a 53-year-old man to death and fatally asphyxiating a 73-year-old woman more than two years ago. Irene Navejar, 42, and Gabriel Keith Escalante, 41, are charged with capital murder of multiple persons and tampering with physical evidence for the April 28, 2018, murders of Alejandro Salinas Sr. and Oliva Salinas. Prosecutors informed Navejar on Wednesday of the development while Escalante learned on June 29 that the state would not try to execute him if he was convicted, court records show. Read the full story at themonitor.com

Lawsuit: Deputies entered home without warrant, made unlawful arrests

A federal judge ruled against dismissing claims of false arrest and excessive force made against two Hidalgo County Sheriff's Office deputies stemming from a 2017 family disturbance. U.S. District Judge Randy Crane denied portions of a motion to dismiss the case, which four family members filed on May 2, 2019, against the county and deputies David Gonzalez and Jose Gonzalez nearly two years after the officers responded to their home. Viviana Bautista, her grandmother Crescencia, and her mother and father, Hermelinda and Guadalupe, filed the litigation, complaining that when deputies David and Jose responded to their house on May 3, 2017 — after Viviana's sister, Isamar Bautista, called 911 after an argument with her mother  —  they used excessive force when arresting a father and daughter. Read the full story at themonitor.com