Timeline: 1951 - 1999

for Carlos Hernandez (“CH”) and Carlos DeLuna (“CDL”)




1951 CH Common law relationship begins between Fidela Solis Gonzales and Carlos | Hernandez, Sr., mother and father.
1953: March 7 CH Pauline (Paula) Hernandez, sister, born in Corpus Christi, Texas.
1954: July 14 CH Born in Corpus Christi.
1955: September 7 CH Gerardo Hernandez, brother, born in Corpus Christi.
1956: September 8 CH Javier Hernandez, brother, born in Corpus, Christi.
1957: November 16 CH Efrain (Frank or Frankie) Hernandez, brother, born in Corpus Christi.
1960: September CH Placed in foster care by his mother Fidela after his father is jailed for rape. Father does not return to Corpus Christi after release.
Late 1950s - 1960 CDL Margarita Conejo, mother, arrives in Corpus Christi with her six children from an earlier marriage with Francisco Conejo (divorced), moves into La Armada housing project, and begins relationship with Joe DeLuna.
1961: January 16 CDL Manuel DeLuna, brother, born in Corpus Christi.
1961: September CH Returns to Fidela’s home.
1962: March 15 CDL Born in Corpus Christi.
1963: May 23 CDL Rosemary (Rose) DeLuna, sister, born in Corpus Christi.
1967 - 1970: September CH Attends Wynn Seale Jr. High School in Corpus Christi, completing the ninth grade.
1969: June 6 CH First juvenile arrest (charge: “Runaway”).
1970: December 30 CH Drives into oncoming traffic at 100 mph and strikes another vehicle. Louis Sissamis, sister Paula’s fiancé, dies. Charged with negligent homicide, driving under the influence, and excessive speed.
1971: April 29 CH Moves to Fremont, California, to live with his uncle and attends Irvington High School.
1972: January 1 CH Withdraws from Irvington High School and returns to Corpus Christi.
1972: January 31 CH Arrested by Corpus Christi Police Department for vehicle theft.
1972: April 3 CH Arrested in Corpus Christi, on three counts of armed robbery of gas station/convenience stores. 1972: spring, summer CH Raped by other inmate(s) while in county jail.
1972: June9 CH Pleads guilty to January 1972 car theft and April 1972 robberies.
1972: September 28 CH Sentenced to prison for maximum of twenty years.
1972: October 3 CH Begins serving sentence in state prison.
1973-1984 Yolanda and Dario Ortiz lease and run Casino Club in Corpus Christi.
1973: November 1 CDL Referred for a psychological evaluation at Sanders Elementary School because of learning and attention difficulties and discipline problems.
1974: March 8 CDL Diagnosed with “language-learning disorder” by school psychologist.
1976: February 2 CDL Found by school medical evaluation to have “fine-motor difficulty,” “specific learning deficits,” and “possible] . . . neurological difficulties.”
1977: Spring CDL Drops out of Tom Browne Middle School in Corpus Christi in eighth grade.
1977: June 20 CDL Arrested as a runaway.
1977: July 19 CDL Arrested as a runaway.
1977: September 23 CDL Arrested as a runaway.
1978: January 2 CH Receives parole after serving about five years of his twenty-year sentence.
1978: February 14 CDL Arrested for attempted burglary and intoxication. Case is eventually dismissed.
1978: March 8 CDL Arrested for burglary. Released with no charges filed.
1978: March 28 CDL Arrested for burglary.
1978: April 17 CDL Arrested for auto theft in Garland, Texas, and for burglary after breaking into his mother’s and half-sister’s house in Corpus Christi.
1978: June 19 CDL Arrested for theft and paint sniffing.
1978: June 27 CDL Arrested for auto theft.
1978: July 18 CDL Arrested for paint sniffing.
1978: July 29 CH Arrested for public intoxication and violating weapons ordinance by carrying a fixed-blade knife.
1978: August 19 CH Arrested for assault while carrying a weapon
1978: September - May 1979 CH Carries on abusive relationship with fifteen-year-old Margie Tapia until police order Hernandez to allow her to leave Fidela's house.
1978: October 18 CH Arrested for evading arrest.
1979: January 12-15 CDL Arrested for unauthorized use of a motor vehicle; released January 15, 1979.
1979: January 15 CH Reprimanded by Board of Pardons and Parole following unspecified offense and arrest.
1979: May CH Ordered by police to permit Margie Tapia to leave his mother’s house, where he had confined her and her newborn son and sexually abused her.
Late 1979, early 1980 CH Dates Gloria Longoria (Sanchez) nonexclusively, for 6 to 8 months; when she breaks up with him, he stalks her.
1979: November 20 Dahlia Sauceda is murdered in front of her two-year-old child; assailant carves an “X” in her back. Detective Olivia Escobedo leads the investigation.
1979: November 29 Police arrest Jesse Garza arrest for murder of Sauceda.
1979: November 30 CDL Arrested for driving while intoxicated; crashed brother Manuel’s car into a chain link fence.
1979: December 10 CH Arrested on suspicion of murder of Sauceda after being matched to fingerprints and boxer shorts found in Sauceda’s van near her body; first says he hadn’t seen Sauceda for months, then is advised by Fidela to say he was with Sauceda “earlier.” He tells police he had sexual relations with Sauceda in her van before midnight on the night she was killed and that she took him home after that.
1979: December 22 CDL Arrested for parole violation.
1980: January 2 and 3 CH Subpoenaed by prosecution and defense to testify at Jesse Garza’s trial for the killing of Dahlia Sauceda.
Early January 1980 CH Interviewed by prosecutor Ken Botary in connection with murder of Dahlia Sauceda; escorted to interview by Detective Olivia Escobedo. Botary continues to trial against Jesse Garza.
1980: January 10 CH Arrested for a traffic offense and released on bond.
1980: January 31 - February 11 CH Jesse Garza is tried and acquitted for the murder of Dahlia Sauceda, based on the defense that Carlos Hernandez committed the crime. Ken Botary is the prosecutor on the case.
1980: February 6 CDL Arrested for drunk and disorderly conduct after an argument with his parents.
1980: February 7 CDL Arrested at Casino Club for consuming alcoholic beverages as a minor.
1980: February 16 CH Arrested for public intoxication.
1980: March 5 CDL Arrested for trespassing at Casino Club.
1980: March 28 CDL Arrested for drunkenness.
1980: May 4 CH Arrested pursuant to the Board of Pardon and Paroles’s pre-revocation warrant authorizing his arrest.
1980: May 23-27 CH Board of Pardon and Parole withdraws pre-revocation warrant (May 23), and order is enforced (May 27), permitting Hernandez’s release from custody.
1980: May 23 CDL Arrested for public intoxication; released May 24, 1980; in custody simultaneously with | CH.
1980: June 19 CDL Arrested in Dallas for attempted rape.
1980: July 4 CDL Released on bond.
1980: July 26 CDL Arrested in Dallas for the unauthorized use of a motor vehicle.
1980: September 25 CDL Pleads no contest to attempted rape and the unauthorized use of a motor vehicle; sentenced to three years in state prison for each offense with the sentences to run concurrently.
1980: September 25 CH Continued on parole despite violating a rule prohibiting the possession of weapons.
1980: October 9 CDL Received into state prison.
1980-81 CH Begins sexually abusing his nine-year-old niece Pricilla in Fidela’s home on Carrizo Street.
1981: October 26 CH Arrested for making threats and resisting arrest after he threatened his girlfriend with a knife.
1982: May 5 CH Marries Rosa Anzaldua Hernandez.
1982: October 8 CH Arrested for unspecified offense.
1982: May 13 CDL Paroled to Nueces County (Corpus Christi) on remainder of three-year sentence.
1982: May 15 CDL Arrested for misdemeanor assault of Juanita Garcia.
1982: June 22 CDL Arrives back in state prison on parole violation.
1982: December 30 CDL Paroled to Corpus Christi with six months remaining on his sentence.
1983: January 13 CDL Paroled to Corpus Christi on remainder of three-year sentence.
1983: January 21 CDL Arrested by Officer Thomas Mylett at Casino Club for public intoxication.
1983: February 1 Sigmor Shamrock manager Robert Stange conducts weekly inventory of gas station.
1983: February 4 Wanda Lopez is knifed to death during an apparent armed robbery at the Sigmor Shamrock station. Carlos DeLuna is discovered hiding under a pick-up truck nearby forty minutes later, arrested, taken to the gas station, and identified as the assailant by Kevan Baker, an eyewitness to the assault. DeLuna tells arresting officers that he did not commit the crime but knows who did. Detective Olivia Escobedo leads the investigation. []
1983: February 6 Armando Garcia finds a white shirt and track shoes in his yard, midway between Esther Barrera’s home and location of Carlos DeLuna’s arrest.
1983: February 7 Hector De Peña is appointed to represent DeLuna.
1983: February 16 Lab reports reveal that there was no blood on DeLuna’s clothing, swabs taken from his body, or the money found in his pocket.
1983: February 17 CDL Indicted for murder of Wanda Lopez.
1983: February CH Tells neighbors and acquaintances that it was he, not Carlos DeLuna, who stabbed Wanda Lopez and that his “tocayo” Carlos DeLuna “took the fall.” Detective Eddie Garza hears from informants that “Carlos Hernandez” (who is well known to Garza from the Carrizo Street and nearby Staples and Mary Street areas) admitted the killing; Garza passes on the information to Detective Escobedo.
1983: February 28 - March 7 CDL Interviewed once or twice by Hector De Peña, who spends approximately a week working on the case—his last work on the case, apart from asking to have co-counsel appointed, until June 1983. Tells De Peña the first time they meet that he saw another man attacking Wanda Lopez but is too afraid of the man to divulge his name.
1983: April 3 CH Stopped by a police officer behind a 7- Eleven at night with a knife in his pocket. Arrested on an outstanding traffic warrant.
1983: April 4 CH Officer Infante, who processed the Shamrock murder scene, inspected Carlos Hernandez’s “major case” fingerprints, evidently in connection with Lopez killing. Released several days later.
1983: April 6 CDL De Peña files a motion for a second court appointed attorney and for a court appointed psychiatrist.
1983: April 15 CDL James Lawrence is appointed as co-counsel with Hector De Peña.
1983: April 15 CDL Order for continuance.
1983: May 5 CH Detective Escobedo collects rap sheets of seven men named Carlos Hernandez, including “the” Carlos Hernandez, and gives them to Ken Botary and Steven Schiwetz, the prosecutors handling the Lopez killing. They review the rap sheets and place them in the Lopez case file.
1983: May 19 CDL Examined by Dr. Joel Kutnick, a psychiatrist.
June 1 or June 2, 1983 CDL Meets with Jim Lawrence for first time.
1983: June 8 CDL Case assigned to Wallace C. Moore, a retired judge.
1983: June 10 CDL Defendant’s first motion for continuance, filed by Lawrence, is denied.
1983: June 15 CDL Examined by Dr. James Plaisted.
1983: June 17 CDL Motion for continuance is denied again, but case is reset for July 5.
1983: July 5 - July 13 CDL Jury selected.
1983: July 6 CH Subpoenaed by the prosecution in connection with Lopez murder (does not appear in court).
1983: July 15 CDL Arraigned before Judge Moore and pleads not guilty.
1983: July 15 CDL Persuaded by his lawyers to name the man he saw attacking Wanda Lopez: Carlos Hernandez. His lawyers pass on the name to the prosecutors, who do not find Hernandez.
1983: July 15-18 CDL State presents case-in-chief against DeLuna.
1983: July 19 CDL Lawrence and De Peña present defense and rest case on the same day.
1983: July 20 CDL Prosecutor calls DeLuna a liar for blaming the crime on a “phantom,” Carlos Hernandez; jury convicts him of capital murder.
1983: July 21 CDL Sentenced to death.
1983: July 22 Prosecutor Ken Botary files a motion to take all of the physical evidence in the case out of the court file and bring it to his office, mistakenly using the name “Carlos Hernandez” to refer to Carlos DeLuna; the court grants his request.
1983: August 8 CDL Files a motion for a new trial.
1983: September 12 CDL Hearing on motion for new trial; motion for a new trial denied.
1983: November 6 CH Arrested for assaulting his wife Rosa Anzaldua and her children with an axe handle; a pre-revocation warrant is issued but parole is not revoked.
1983: November 7 CH Rosa Anzaldua files a divorce petition against Carlos Hernandez.
1983: November 17 CDL Files request to remove De Peña as his lawyer and for replacement lawyer to assist Lawrence with the appeal.
1984: January 3 CH Released from custody for assault on Rosa Anzaldua after pre-revocation warrant is withdrawn.
1984: February 8 CH Convicted of misdemeanor assault on Rosa Anzaldua causing bodily injury and confined for 30 days in local jail.
1984: March 2 CDL Appeals capital conviction and sentence to the Texas Court of Criminal Appeal.
1984: March 8 CH Released from custody after serving 30 days for assault on Rosa Anzaldua.
1984: May 11 CDL Disciplined by Texas Department of Corrections for sniffing paint.
1984: August 21 CH Arrested.
1984: October 12 CH Parole revocation warrant issued.
1984: December 12 Hector De Peña, Carlos DeLuna’s former attorney, files for bankruptcy for relief from debts accumulated over past several years.
1985: April 17 CH Arrested in front of Dina Ybañez’s house for public intoxication while riding a bicycle.
1985: May to August CH Lives with Diane Gomez in Corpus Christi.
1985: May 9 CH Arrested; found with a knife.
1985: November 21 CH Divorce becomes final.
1986: March 27 CH Arrested for public intoxication; found with a knife.
1986: April 6 CDL State files brief in Court of Criminal Appeals defending DeLuna conviction and death sentence.
1986: April 17 CH Diane Gomez signs statement to the Corpus Christi Police Dept. stating that Hernandez confessed to murdering Dahlia Sauceda.
1986: June 4 CDL Conviction upheld by Texas Court of Criminal Appeals.
1986: July 15 CH Arrested for murder of Dahlia Sauceda based on detailed confession made to Diana Gomez.
1986: July 15 CH Arrested for murder of Dahlia Sauceda; a photo in a local newspaper the next day shows Detectives Eddie Garza and Paul Rivera escorting him, mustachioed and in a white T-shirt and jeans, to jail.
October 1986 CDL Certiorari petition denied by the United States Supreme Court.
1986: July 23 CDL Death warrant sets execution for October 15, 1986, in Huntsville, Texas
1986: October 7 CDL Seeks a stay of execution and writ of habeas corpus, alleging racial bias by the state and ineffective assistance of counsel.  During this month, his Certiorari Petition was denied by the U.S. Supreme Court.
1986: October 8 CDL Petition rejected by local Judge Walter Dunham, Jr.; files appeal to the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals.
1986: October 13 CDL Loses appeal in Texas Court of Criminal Appeals; seeks stay and writ of habeas corpus from federal court in Corpus Christi.
1986: October 14 CDL Receives stay of execution from United States District Judge Hayden W. Head, Jr. (S.D. Tex.).
1986: November 12 CDL Texas files a motion for summary judgment.
1986: November 14 CH Attorney withdraws at his request; Jon Kelly appointed as new counsel.
1986: December 22 Jon Kelly moves to dismiss the charge against Hernandez for Sauceda’s murder on speedy trial grounds.
1986: December 31 CH Released and murder charges are dismissed due to prosecution delays, including because Ken Botary lost key evidence against Hernandez. ~1987-1989 Manuel DeLuna runs into Miguel Ortiz in prison; Ortiz describes Hernandez’s confession that he killed Wanda Lopez (and two other women) and that he let Carlos DeLuna get convicted for his crime.
1987: January 23 CDL Files response to Texas’s motion for summary judgment.
1987: January 27 CH Arrested for public intoxication; found with a knife.
1987: May 8 CH Arrested on an outstanding warrant; found with a knife.
1987: July 16 CH Arrested for public intoxication; found with a knife.
1987: July 29 CH Charged with public drunkenness; parole is revoked and he is briefly imprisoned.
1987: October 14 CH Given 15 days confinement to his cell for threatening an officer.
1988: February 3 Texas files a motion to expedite proceedings in the DeLuna appeal.
1988: June 3 Vargas family settles lawsuit against Diamond Shamrock, receiving “substantial” (undisclosed) damages.
1988: June 11 CH Hospitalized for a head injury after he falls off a pickup truck.
1988: June 13 CDL Denied a writ of habeas corpus by federal district court, based in part on Judge Head’s conclusion that Carlos Hernandez likely didn’t exist.
1988: July 12 CDL Files a motion to attach affidavits and new evidence to his previously filed pleadings; for the first time, submits sworn statements from friends and relatives stating that neither Lawrence nor De Peña had ever contacted them to provide mitigating evidence at his 1983 trial.
1988: July 19 CDL Motion denied by federal district court.
1988: July 28 CDL Files appeal in the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit in New Orleans.
1988: October 24 CDL Files a brief in the Fifth Circuit, alleging that Lawrence and De Peña provided substandard legal representation at the sentencing stage by presenting no mitigating evidence.
1988: November 29 Texas files a brief in response in the Fifth Circuit.
1989: April 15 CH Stabs Dina Ybañez with a buck knife and threatens to carve an “X” into her back and rape her; Dina’s sons interrupt the attack; Hernandez flees.
1989: April 19 CH Charged with aggravated assault of Dina Ybañez.
1989: April 26 CDL Appeal denied by Fifth Circuit.
1989: May 26 CDL Request for rehearing en banc denied by Fifth Circuit.
1989: July 19 CDL Motion to stay the setting of an execution date denied by the Fifth Circuit.
1989: August 24 CDL Asks the Supreme Court for a writ of certiorari.
1989: October 9 CH Pleads guilty to aggravated assault of Dina Ybañez; sentenced to 10 years in prison.
1989: October 10 CDL Certiorari denied by the United States Supreme Court.
1989: November 2 CDL Receives an execution date of December 7, 1989; seeks a stay of execution and writ of habeas corpus from the county court in Corpus Christi. 1989: November 15 Texas files an answer to DeLuna’s application and files proposed findings of fact and conclusions of law.
1989: November 17 CDL Files objections to Texas’s proposed findings and conclusions.
1989: November 22 CDL Denied a stay and all other relief by the county judge.
1989: November 24 CDL Files appeal in Texas Court of Criminal Appeals.
1989: November 29 CDL Loses appeal in the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals.
1989: November 30 CDL Asks a federal district court for a stay of execution; Texas files a motion to dismiss.
1989: December 2 CDL Denied a stay and a writ of habeas corpus by the federal district judge; appeals to the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals and the U.S. Supreme Court.
1989: December 5 CDL Loses appeal in the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals.
1989: December 6 CDL Denied review by the U.S. Supreme Court; denied clemency by Governor William Clements.
1989: December 7 CDL Executed.
1990: April 25 CH Charged with possession of narcotic drugs while incarcerated.
1991: May 23 CH Released on parole after serving 19 months on his ten-year sentence.
1992: February 29 CH Arrested.
1993: November 16 CH Arrested for public intoxication.
1994: March 15 CH Arrested for possession of a controlled substance.
1994: April 28 CH Arrested for public intoxication.
1994: August 18 CH Arrested.
1994: September 14 CH Arrested for public intoxication.
1995: July 24 CH Admitted to Memorial Medical Center in Corpus Christi, claiming he dropped a fire extinguisher on his left foot two weeks earlier; diagnosed with diabetes.
1996: January 11 CH Arrested for assault and possession of a knife (in violation of his parole).
1996: February 22 CH Pre-Revocation warrant issued by parole board.
1996: May 25 CH Arrested for public intoxication; found with a knife.
1996: September 20 CH Parole revoked after Hernandez threatens neighbors with knives.
~1998 Manuel DeLuna and Linda Perales marry, but divorce quickly. After learning that Linda had married Manuel, Pricilla Hernandez (Linda’s stepdaughter) tells Linda she overheard Carlos Hernandez claim he killed Wanda Lopez.
1999: May 6 CH Dies in prison of cirrhosis of the liver.