The defendant, Gabriel Velasquez, was reported to be 28 years old when the child died on May 12, 2010, according to a Bee County Grand Jury indictment returned last Thursday, Nov. 29.
The victim was identified as Elias Ramos Torres at the time of his death. The case was being investigated at the time by Texas Ranger Andy Lopez and Beeville Police Department Detective René Guerrero.
Lopez has since retired from the Texas Department of Public Safety and Texas Ranger James Bennett has taken over the investigation.
Bennett said the defendant was the child’s caregiver at the time.
The indictment included three counts of injury to a child against the defendant. Those included an allegation that he pinched and squeezed the victim’s scrotum during an incident on April 2, 2010. The second count of the indictment alleged that the defendant burned the child with a fork and broke some of the child’s ribs on May 10.
Then on May 12, the indictment alleges that Velasquez threw the child against a hard, stationary object “unknown to the grand jury.”
That caused the victim’s death.
Each of the first three counts of the indictment were third degree felonies. If convicted of any of them, he could be sentenced to a prison term of up to 10 years and fined $10,000.
The fourth count of the indictment said “capital murder-death penalty.
District Judge Joel Johnson set the defendant’s bond at $100,000.
Gary Kent is a reporter at the Bee-Picayune and can be reached at 358-2550, ext. 120, or at reporter@mySouTex.com.