High school baseball player charged with Donna teen’s murder

A high school baseball player at PSJA Memorial faces a charge of murder following an investigation into the shooting death of a Donna teenager. Carlos Julian Contreras, the 17-year-old suspect in the death of 19-year-old Genaro Isaiah “Izzy” Castillo, remains jailed on a $1 million bond handed down during his arraignment Thursday afternoon at the Hidalgo County jail. Public records indicate that the suspect is the son of Alamo Fire Chief Roy Contreras, who declined to take questions Thursday when reached by telephone. Read the full story at themonitor.com

From Boston to the RGV: Tommy DeCarlo bringing his band to McAllen

Tommy DeCarlo has come a long way since donning a Home Depot apron. After his daughter, Talia DeCarlo uploaded a video of him singing along to a Boston song on MySpace, the North Carolina native has performed alongside the American rock band on stage. DeCarlo’s unlikely rise to fame has brought him to many stages across the country to perform in front of thousands of people, and he will be bringing his own band, DECARLO, to McAllen’s Cine El Rey theater on Saturday. Read the full story at themonitor.com.

Court defers prison time for San Juan man in deadly accident case

A court will allow a San Juan man who struck and killed a bicyclist in late 2017 to serve 90 days in jail before being released on an eight-year deferred adjudication. That decision from the court came Wednesday during Andrew Isaiah Villarreal’s sentencing hearing. The 22-year-old man’s attorney, O. Rene Flores, put some items on the record prior to the sentencing, most importantly the results of a drug test administered Dec. 17, 2019, after the last drug test came back positive for cocaine that led to Villarreal’s bond being revoked temporarily. Flores said that result was in fact a false positive; but the new result, which covers a period of 90 days going back to Sept. 17, did not account for a positive result in August, the state’s prosecutor, Andrew Almaguer, told the court. Read the full story at themonitor.com.

Body of fallen Brownsville soldier back in the US

BROWNSVILLE — Funeral services will be held next week for Pfc. Miguel A. Villalon, a Brownsville native who was killed Saturday in Afghanistan when the vehicle he was riding in was struck by an IED, or improvised explosive device. Leslie Duval, Villalon, Villalon’s aunt and godmother, said services are scheduled for next Friday and Saturday. Villalon’s remains arrived Tuesday night at Dover Air Force Base, Del., where Vice President Mike Pence and other dignitaries received them. They will be transported back to Brownsville where Villalon will be buried. Read more on The Monitor.com.

Convict in ‘Edinburg Massacre’ successfully has state appeal re-opened

A 40-year-old San Juan man who has spent 15 years on death row for his role in one of the Rio Grande Valley’s most heinous crimes is coming back to Hidalgo County. A federal magistrate judge ruled Monday that Rodolfo Alvarez Medrano’s capital murder case must be re-opened in state court so that the man can challenge the state’s “gang expert,” who has since been stripped of his law enforcement license after being convicted of abuse of official capacity and being arrested for having oral sex with a woman in custody for robbery. Medrano was sentenced to death in 2005 for his role in the “Edinburg Massacre” where multiple men in 2003 stormed two rural homes and shot six men to death while attempting to steal money and drugs. Read the full story at themonitor.com.

Records: Murder suspects targeted doctor’s cash

The man accused of shooting a doctor in November was recruited the same day the fatal robbery turned into a murder in a matter of minutes. Weslaco police Chief Joel Rivera announced that investigators tracked down Alamo residents Joel Ismael Gonzalez, 17, Josue Benavides Torres, 31, and Weslaco resident Luis Antonio Lopez Valenzuela, 19, between Jan. 3 and Jan. 8 after a tip from Runnels County, Texas, from a sharp-eyed deputy helped crack the case. The trio is accused of murdering Dr. John Dominguez on Nov. 7 during an attempt to steal $25,000 in cash they believed he kept in a brief case in his car, according to probable cause affidavits. Read the full story at themonitor.com.

Sheriff’s office arrests 17-year-old suspect in Donna Lakes shooting death

The Hidalgo County Sheriff’s Office on Wednesday arrested a suspect in the shooting death of a Donna teenager. Sheriff J.E. “Eddie” Guerra announced via Twitter that sheriff’s investigators had arrested 17-year-old Carlos Julian Contreras of Alamo for the shooting death of 18-year-old Genaro Isaiah Castillo, which is being investigated as a murder. Castillo’s body was discovered Tuesday on a caliche road near a sugarcane field off of Valley View Road in the Donna Lakes area. Guerra said that his office received a 9-1-1 call at around 5:47 p.m. from a farmer reporting that one of his field workers found Castillo’s body. Read the full story at themonitor.com.

Ex-Edinburg city manager charged with assault

Former Edinburg City Manager Juan Guerra has now turned himself in to local police after defending himself against accusations of assault from his former fiance, Miriam Cepeda. Read the full story at themonitor.com.

Ex-Edinburg city manager disputes assault narrative

Edinburg's former city manager recently accused of assaulting his fiance faced a similar accusation about seven years ago while working for the city of Pharr, but said the case has since been expunged. The documents surrounding Juan Guerra’s first assault accusation involving his ex-wife, Lucy Castanon, and his former sister-in-law, Monica Castanon, should not exist anymore, his attorney Reynaldo Merino said Tuesday. “That’s the whole reason you do any expunction, is to purge (it)... so it’s never brought up again,” Merino said. The Monitor, however, obtained a copy of the case surrounding the Sept. 14, 2012, incident in which Guerra was listed as a suspect, but never arrested or charged with a crime. Read the full story at themonitor.com.

McAllen man charged with abusing employer’s credit card

A McAllen man was arrested for allegedly using his employer’s credit card to make unauthorized purchases. The suspect was identified as Alberto Gonzalez Jr., an employee of the owner of the credit card, according to the police report, which does not identify the suspect’s occupation. A man made contact with McAllen Police Department investigators on Jan. 9 to report suspicious transactions made to his employer’s credit card, the report read. Read the full story at themonitor.com