An Ellis County grand jury has indicted a Dallas man on a charge of intoxication manslaughter.
Aaron Eugene Henderson, 46, was the driver of one of two vehicles involved in a collision Feb. 25 on State Highway 342 near U.S. Highway 77 at Red Oak.
“He crossed the center lane in the middle of the curve and struck the victim. When officers arrived on scene, the defendant had to be extricated from the seat of his vehicle,” assistant district attorney Patrick Wilson said, saying that evidence of alcohol was found.
Mimi Beth Wittlinger, 49, was pronounced dead at the scene as a result of injuries suffered in the head-on accident, which occurred at 10:45 p.m. in the 700 block of State Highway 342.
Intoxication manslaughter is a second-degree felony. The indictment against Henderson alleges a prior conviction for burglary of a habitation, which would subject him to a first-degree punishment of from five to 99 years or life if he is found guilty.
Robbery charge filed
Brannon Robert Parsons, 26, of Red Oak was indicted on two non-related charges: evading arrest with a vehicle and robbery.
The evading charge resulted from an April 1 incident in which a Red Oak officer conducted a traffic stop and determined Parsons’ license was suspended, Wilson said. “The officer was attempting to arrest him when Mr. Parsons jumped back into his car and fled from the officer. There was an extensive chase that lasted until he crashed into a tree.”
The indictment alleges two prior state jail convictions, one for possession of a controlled substance and the other for unauthorized use of a vehicle, Wilson said, noting the evading arrest, also a state jail felony, will be enhanced, if convicted.
Prior jail felony convictions can be used to enhance another state jail felony to a third-degree level, he said, although they can’t be used to enhance a felony already at a higher level.
“Ten days after he posted bond for that offense (evading arrest), he allegedly committed the robbery offense, which is a second-degree felony,” Wilson said, saying the defendant went to the apartment of a woman he knew and allegedly began to rifle through her purse.
“She confronted him and he assaulted her and stole the cash from her purse,” Wilson said.
Ricardo Hernandez, 54, of Ennis was indicted on a state jail felony charge of animal cruelty relating to an incident in April.
“The sheriff’s office had received a tip from a citizen in the Bardwell area that cockfighting was taking place on Mr. Hernandez’ property,” Wilson said, noting that when officers arrived, they could see a number of lean-to shelters and stakes in the yard common to cockfighting.
“About 40 cars were on the property and when officers arrived, people were fleeing in all directions,” Wilson said, saying Hernandez was identified as the property owner.
“It was obvious from all of the evidence found at the scene that this was a commercial cockfighting operation,” he said, saying officers saw a concession stand, “all manner of cockfighting paraphernalia” as well as the carcasses of dead fowl on the property.
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