MERCEDES, Texas (ValleyCentral) — Five people charged with the killing of a Mission teenager were arraigned Thursday afternoon.
Justice of the Peace Jason Pena Pct. 5. held the arraignment at the Hidalgo County Detention Center for the murder which occurred in Mercedes on Feb. 23.
The last update on the case was reported at the end of February when Hidalgo County Sheriff Eddie Guerra held a press conference to identify two new suspects and a motive in the shooting.
The deceased, 19-year-old Carlos Garcia Ruiz, was the “ring leader” of an international human smuggling group that attempted to kidnap another victim who owed them money, Guerra said.
According to a release sent by the Hidalgo County Sheriff’s Office on Thursday, Erik Eduardo Almaraz, 22, was formally charged with murder plus two counts of aggravated kidnapping with a deadly weapon.
At the arraignment, his bond was set at $1,300,000.
Ashley Orozco, Esmeralda Orozco, Rosalba Garcia and Joselyn Lomeli will all be formally charged with two counts of aggravated kidnapping with a deadly weapon in connection to the killing.
All four of the girls received a bond of $300,000 respectively.
Prior to Thursday’s arraignment, all four of the girls were formally charged with murder and tampering with evidence.