Accused cop killers appear in court

June 26, 2009 5:05:02 PM PDT
A man and a woman in custody were in court Friday. They are both being held on capital murder charges, with no bond, for killing a Houston police officer. Even though they did not pull the trigger, prosecutors said they are equally responsible for the death of Houston Police Officer Henry Canales.

The two murder suspects stood next to another in front of a judge as translators helped them understand the case against of them. Neither have attorneys yet.

Prosecutors have laid out a specific timeline that led to the death of Canales.

"They're charged with capital murder. The complaint against each of them alleges that they killed Officer Canales in the process of committing a robbery," said prosecutor Julian Ramirez.

Prosecutors believe that robbery was the motive when the two suspects and a third man met to buy what they believed were stolen TVs and computers from an undercover Canales.

It was during that robbery they said the third man shot and killed Canales before surveillance officers could rush to the scene. Once there, they said officers shot and killed the third suspect as he fired on them.

The two surviving suspects are both here illegally. Xiomara Mendez-Rosales is from Honduras. Andres Nava Maldonado is Mexican and his country's consulate had a representative in court Friday.

"The consulate has not yet received formal notification, but we are here nonetheless," said the Mexican Consulate representative. "We represent Mexico's interests in this proceeding."

That's news to prosecutor Ramirez.

"It's unusual in my experience for someone to show up representing a foreign government. I've not spoken to them and so i can't tell you what their status is in the case," Ramirez said.

The Honduran Consulate here in Houston could not provide anyone to us who could speak about the case. However, we did talk to Mexico's Consul General about the charges against Andres Nava Maldonado.

"We assist them by being at every process that we can. We assist them at every hearing that we are allowed. We assist them to see that they get adequate legal representation," Mexican Consul General Carlos Gonzalez.

Nava Maldonado said he is expecting the consulate will get him an attorney. Xiomara Mendez-Rosales is asking that the court appoint her one.

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