The Wharton County District Attorney’s Office shared information on several cases that were recently heard before judges and then sentences issued.

On Thursday, Jan. 9, El Campo resident Jesus Manuel Martinez, 30, pled guilty to two felonies; escape from custody and possession of methamphetamine. Both charges carried a range of punishment from two to 20 years in prison. Judge Randy Clapp in the 329th District Court sentenced Martinez to 12 years prison as part of a plea agreement.

D.A. Dawn Allison said this case began on April 11, 2019 when the defendant pled guilty to a 2018 charge for possession of methamphetamine. Allison said during his plea, the defendant “begged” the court for a brief furlough to attend the birth of his child. The court granted his furlough request, and in exchange, the defendant promised to turn himself into the Wharton County Jail in May. 

Martinez never appeared, Allison said. 

The defendant remained at large until Aug. 14, 2019, when D.A. Investigator Raymond Jansky led a search for Martinez. Jansky was aided by the Wharton County Sheriff’s Office and El Campo Police Department. Together, they located an El Campo residence where Martinez had been hiding. During the defendant’s arrest on his escape charges, police discovered that Martinez was again found in possession of methamphetamine. 

Other sentences

Allison said on Thursday Jan. 9, Midfield resident Robert Martinez Morales, 33, pled guilty to the felony offense, failure to register as a sex offender. As part of his plea agreement with the D.A.’s Office, Morales was sentenced to four years in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, Correctional Institutions Division.  

This was the second defendant this week in Wharton County to receive four years in prison for failure to register as a sex offender, Allison said. Jose Ramos, 45, of El Campo, was sentenced on Monday, Jan. 6 by Judge Ben Hardin in the 23rd District Court.

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