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Texas Judge Sets $10 Million Bond for Venezuelan Man Accused in Murder of 12-year-old Houston Girl

"Justice for young victim"

Judge Sets $10 Million Bond for Venezuelan Man Accused of Murdering a 12-year-old Houston Girl

In a recent development, a judge in Texas has set a $10 million bond for an undocumented 26-year-old Venezuelan man, Franklin Jose Peña Ramos, who is implicated in the brutal murder of a 12-year-old Houston girl, Jocelyn Nungaray. Her remains were tragically discovered in a local creek after she went missing during a casual walk to a nearby convenience store.


Suspects Tried to Evade Law Enforcement Following the Murder

Alongside Peña Ramos, another suspect, Johan Jose Martinez-Rangel, 22, is also charged with the tragic capital murder of young Nungaray. The two alleged malefactors, both Venezuelan nationals, had entered the United States illegally in March. According to a statement released by the U.S. Department of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), both men attempted to abscond from the Houston area shortly after the alleged murder.

Details About the Defendants’ Immigration Status

Peña and Martinez-Rangel were apprehended by the U.S. Border Patrol near El Paso, Texas, with Martinez-Rangel taken into custody on March 14, and Peña apprehended two weeks later on March 28. They were later released with mandates to appear in court at an unspecified later date.

With immigration matters weighing heavily on public opinion, this incident will likely intensify the debate on the current administration’s handling of border security issues. This sentiment was further reflected by the U.S. president’s recent proposition of imposing stringent restrictions on migrants seeking asylum at the border with Mexico.

As of present, both suspects are subjected to federal immigration holds, meaning they would remain in custody even if they manage to post bail.


Overview of Crime and Subsequent Investigations

Nungaray’s lifeless body was found on June 17 in a shallow creek, after ostensibly sneaking out of her home the night before. The medical examiner’s report confirmed that the innocent girl met her tragic end through strangulation.

The Suspects’ Alleged Actions

It is alleged in court documents that the suspects enticed the young girl under a bridge, where the horrific crime was committed. The documents claim that they spent over two hours with her there. They allegedly undressed her, bound her, and then cruelly took her life before discarding her body into the bayou. It has been noted that it doesn’t seem as though the two men had any prior acquaintance with the 12-year-old victim.

The Aftermath

The Harris County District Attorney has underscored the horrific nature of this crime. The suspects, who were reportedly roommates, were arrested when surveillance footage showed two men approaching Jocelyn Nungaray before going to a Houston convenience store with her. The trio was then seen heading towards a bridge, where the girl later tragically lost her life.

Family and Public Reactions

The victim’s mother, Alexis Nungaray, deeply mourned the loss of her child, noting her vibrant personality and bright future. Jocelyn’s grandfather echoed this sentiment, adding that his granddaughter’s untimely death could have been prevented if the country’s immigration policies were more stringent.

Court Proceedings and Possible Penalties

While the suspects currently face capital murder charges — which are not eligible for the death penalty, it has been noted that additional DNA testing or evidence indicating a sexual assault or kidnapping could potentially lead to the imposition of the death penalty.


Texas Judge Sets $10 Million Bond for Venezuelan Man Accused in Murder of 12-year-old Houston Girl

HERE Irmo
Author: HERE Irmo

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