‘No contest’ plea made in Carranza death

Jeter Jeter A 32-year-old Rockdale man pleaded “no contest” Monday in a case involving a 2009 vehicle-pedestrian death near Thorndale and the court will decide his fate.

Prosecutor Kerry Spears said David Brian Jeter was originally scheduled for a 20th District Court trial, to begin on Monday, but he decided to make an open plea of “no contest” to the court .

Sentencing is set for 1:30 p.m. Nov. 1.

‘F AI STOP’ —< charged with failure to stop and render aid in connection with the March 13, 2009, highway death of Rudy Carranza, 18, a Thorndale High School senior.

Carranza’s body was discovered alongside FM 486, one mile north of Thorndale, the morning of March 14, when a passer-by saw a body and reported it to the sheriff’s department.

State Trooper Erik Gaston said while investigators were at the scene, Jeter drove up.

Gaston said Jeter believed he had struck a deer in the dark, between 8:30 and 8:45 p.m. the previous night, and did not stop.

Carranza was walking home when the accident occurred, Gaston said.

INDICTMENT— Jeter was indicted last August after an investigation by Gaston was turned over to Spears for her considerat ion a nd possible action.

Spears said failure to stop and render aid was the charge she brought to the grand jury and the only charge she considered after studying Gaston’s report on the incident.

“In Texas, there is no such thing as involuntary manslaughter anymore,” Spears said. “The only thing similar is criminally negligent homicide which is a state jail felony. Failure to stop and render aid is a more serious charge.”

Failure to stop and render aid is a third-degree felony, which is punishable by a term of 2 to 10 years and a fine of up to $10,000.

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2010-10-07 digital edition

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