McKinney Man Sentenced to Life without Parole After Pleading Guilty to Capital Murder of His Wife and Her Twin Sister

August 16, 2017

(McKINNEY, Texas) – Kelley Eugene Bigham, 52, of McKinney, Texas was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole after pleading guilty to Capital Murder of his wife and her twin sister, announced Collin County District Attorney Greg Willis.

On June 20, 2016, Bigham, who was estranged from his wife, Karen Bigham, returned to the marital residence on High Pointe Drive in McKinney to retrieve some of his belongings.  Also at the residence were the Bigham’s adult daughter and Karen Bigham’s twin sister, Kathy Boobar.  Bigham displayed a handgun and then told his daughter to leave.  Immediately upon leaving the residence, Bigham’s daughter heard her mother yell “call 911,” and then heard two gun shots.

Bigham fled the scene and drove to Rains County where his family lived.  Bigham was arrested at his father’s house by the Rains County Sheriff’s Department with the assistance of the East Tawakoni Police Department and the Texas Rangers.

Several family members were present for the plea and gave emotional victim impact statements. They spoke of the love and friendship Karen, a hairstylist, and Kathy, a bank president, shared as well as how their tragic murders affected their community.  Approximately 2000 people attended the twin sisters’ visitation and funeral services.  District Judge Benjamin Smith accepted Bigham’s guilty plea and assessed the automatic sentence of life in prison without parole.

Assistant Criminal District Attorney Lisa Milasky King prosecuted the case, assisted by District Attorney Investigator Kenny Newton and District Attorney Victim Assistance Coordinator Susanne Riggs.  McKinney Police Detective Craig Owens investigated the case, with assistance from McKinney Police Sergeant Russel May and Texas Ranger Reuben Mankin.

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“Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” in Collin County

August 15, 2017

(McKinney, Texas) – DWI drivers need to be on notice that this weekend will be a “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” weekend, announced Collin County District Attorney Greg Willis.

Those showing signs of driving while intoxicated will be asked to provide a breath or blood sample.  If they refuse, officers will seek a warrant from a judge.  On-call judges stand ready to determine probable cause for a warrant.  The driver’s blood will be drawn if the judge finds there is sufficient evidence of DWI.

The mission of the Collin County District Attorney’s office is to pursue justice and protect the community.  It works with law enforcement agencies to reduce the number of DWI offenses through the combination of effective prosecution and public awareness of the “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” program.

The officers do not draw the blood. Rather, health care professionals are stationed at certain local jails for this purpose. The aim of this program is to keep citizens and roadways safe by preventing DWI activity.  But those who disregard the rights of others should be aware that August 18-20 is a “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” weekend in Collin County.

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Allen Man Sentenced to 40 Years for Sexually Abusing Child

July 19, 2017

(McKINNEY, Texas) – James Schafer, 35, of Allen, was sentenced to 40 years in prison for Aggravated Sexual Assault of a Child, announced Collin County District Attorney Greg Willis.

Schafer sexually abused a child related to him for several years beginning when she was 6 years old. Local law enforcement first became aware of the abuse in 2016 when Schafer told family members in Michigan about what he had done to the child. Michigan State Police were contacted and the case was referred to Allen Police Department once it was determined that the multiple instances of sexual assault occurred in Texas.

Lisa Martinez with the Children’s Advocacy Center of Collin County forensically interviewed the child, who disclosed details about the abuse.  Allen Police Department Detective Michelle Peel investigated the case.

Schafer pled guilty to the offense and Judge James Fry assessed the agreed punishment at 40 years in prison.

Assistant District Attorney Ashley Keil prosecuted the case, assisted by District Attorney Investigator Greg Bowers.

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“Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” in Collin County

July 19, 2017

(McKinney, Texas) – DWI drivers need to be on notice that this weekend will be a “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” weekend, announced Collin County District Attorney Greg Willis.

Those showing signs of driving while intoxicated will be asked to provide a breath or blood sample.  If they refuse, officers will seek a warrant from a judge.  On-call judges stand ready to determine probable cause for a warrant.  The driver’s blood will be drawn if the judge finds there is sufficient evidence of DWI.

The mission of the Collin County District Attorney’s office is to pursue justice and protect the community.  It works with law enforcement agencies to reduce the number of DWI offenses through the combination of effective prosecution and public awareness of the “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” program.

The officers do not draw the blood.  Rather, health care professionals are stationed at certain local jails for this purpose.  The aim of this program is to keep citizens and roadways safe by preventing DWI activity.  But those who disregard the rights of others should be aware that July 21-23 is a “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” weekend in Collin County.

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McKinney Man Sentenced to 30 Years in Prison After Pleading Guilty to Sexual Assault of a Child

July 7, 2017

(McKINNEY, Texas) – Brandon McPhearson, 20, of McKinney was sentenced to 30 years in prison after pleading guilty to two counts of Aggravated Sexual Assault of a Child, announced Collin County District Attorney Greg Willis.

McPhearson lived with a relative in McKinney during a time that two children unrelated to him were frequently at the residence.  The first child disclosed the abuse during a forensic interview on an unrelated matter at Alliance for Children in Arlington.  Based on her disclosure, a forensic interview was set up for the second child who also disclosed abuse by McPhearson.  Once it was determined the offenses happened in McKinney, McKinney Police Detective Chris Kennedy was assigned to the case and conducted an investigation.

McPhearson entered an agreed plea of guilty in exchange for a 30 year sentence.  Both victims and their family were present for the plea.  The victims’ mother gave a victim impact statement and also read a statement written by one of the victims.  Judge James Fry presided over the case.

Assistant District Attorney Sarah Preston prosecuted the cases, assisted by District Attorney Investigator Kim Voigt-Eanes, as well as District Attorney Victim Assistance Coordinator Susanne Riggs.

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Farmersville Man Sentenced to 35 Years in Prison for Repeated Sexual Abuse of Child

June 23, 2017

(McKINNEY, Texas) – Nahun Gutierrez, 22, of Farmersville was sentenced to 35 years in prison without the possibility of parole for Continuous Sexual Abuse of a Child, announced Collin County District Attorney Greg Willis.

In 2015, Gutierrez had repeated sexual contact with an 8 year old child known to him.  In July 2016, the child told school classmates about the abuse; school personnel reported the child’s outcry to authorities. Lydia Connor with the Children’s Advocacy Center of Collin County forensically interviewed the child, who disclosed details about the abuse.  Collin County Sheriff’s Office Investigator Chris Fontana collected items identified during the forensic interview and submitted them for DNA testing.  Those items were later confirmed to have biological evidence belonging to Gutierrez.

The jury returned guilty verdicts.  Judge Richard Davis presided over the trial and sentenced Gutierrez to 35 years in prison without the possibility for parole for Continuous Sexual Abuse of a Child and 10 years in prison for a related charge of Indecency with a Child.

Assistant District Attorneys Sarah Preston and Geeta Singletary prosecuted the case, assisted by District Attorney Investigator Kim Voigt-Eanes, as well as District Attorney Victim Assistance Coordinator Susanne Riggs.

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Farmersville Man Sentenced to 40 Years for Sexual Assault of Intellectually Disabled Child

June 15, 2017

(McKinney, Texas) – Henry Fletcher, 81, of Farmersville, was sentenced to 40 years in prison for Aggravated Sexual Assault of a Disabled Child, announced Collin County District Attorney Greg Willis. “Special needs children are the most vulnerable members of our community and anyone that harms them will be vigorously prosecuted,” said Willis.

In June of 2015, the child went for a walk near her house in Farmersville.  Fletcher, who did not know the child, coaxed her into his car.  Fletcher took her to his house where he sexually assaulted her.  After the assault, Fletcher dropped the child off a few blocks from her house.  She ran home and immediately told her parents.  A sexual assault exam yielded biological material that was later compared to Fletcher’s DNA.  DNA analysis confirmed Fletcher as the perpetrator.  At the time of the offense, the intellectually disabled child was 14 years old.  Fletcher was 79 years old.

Farmersville Police Department Officer William Redding responded first to the scene and Collin County Sheriff’s Office, Child Abuse Task Force Investigator Danny Stasik investigated the case.

Judge Barnett Walker found Fletcher guilty of the offense of Aggravated Sexual Assault of a Disabled Child and assessed punishment at 40 years in prison.

Assistant District Attorneys Ashley Keil and Geeta Singletary prosecuted the case, assisted by District Attorney Investigator Stephanie Strickland.

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“Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” in Collin County

June 14, 2017

(McKinney, Texas) – DWI drivers need to be on notice that this weekend will be a “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” weekend, announced Collin County District Attorney Greg Willis.

Those showing signs of driving while intoxicated will be asked to provide a breath or blood sample.  If they refuse, officers will seek a warrant from a judge. On-call judges stand ready to determine probable cause for a warrant.  The driver’s blood will be drawn if the judge finds there is sufficient evidence of DWI.

The mission of the Collin County District Attorney’s office is to pursue justice and protect the community.  It works with law enforcement agencies to reduce the number of DWI offenses through the combination of effective prosecution and public awareness of the “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” program.

The officers do not draw the blood. Rather, health care professionals are stationed at certain local jails for this purpose.  The aim of this program is to keep citizens and roadways safe by preventing DWI activity.  But those who disregard the rights of others should be aware that June 16-18 is a “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” weekend in Collin County.

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Plano Man Sentenced to 41 Years without Parole for Sexual Assault of a Child

June 9, 2017

(McKinney, Texas) – Daniel Ortega, 22, of Plano, was sentenced to 41 years in prison without parole for Continuous Sexual Abuse of a Child, announced Collin County District Attorney Greg Willis.

Ortega was well acquainted with the family and had ongoing access to the child. He sexually abused the victim multiple times weekly over a three year period, beginning when the child was nine. After the child moved away, the child told her mother about Ortega’s abuse.

Plano Police Department Detective Kristina McClain investigated the case, assisted by Jeff Davis County Sheriff Deputy Jerry Walker. Big Bend Advocacy Center’s Shana Sullivan forensically interviewed the child, who out-cried in detail about the abuse.

The jury returned a guilty verdict, after which the parties agreed upon the punishment of 41 years in prison without the possibility of parole for Continuous Sexual Abuse of a Child and 20 years in prison for a related charge on which the jury also found Ortega guilty, Indecency with a Child.

Assistant District Attorneys Geeta Singletary and Ashley Keil prosecuted the case, assisted by District Attorney Investigator Kim Eanes and District Attorney Victim Assistance Coordinator Susanne Riggs. Judge Barnett Walker presided over the trial and assessed the agreed sentence.

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Arizona Man Receives Life In Prison For Murder of Plano Roommate

June 1, 2017

(McKinney, Texas) – David Ruiz, 37, of Arizona City, Arizona, received life in prison for Murder, announced Collin County District Attorney Greg Willis.

Ruiz met the 25 year-old male victim in May of 2008, at a lab study in Austin, Texas.  The victim offered to let Ruiz stay at an apartment with him and a friend in Plano, Texas after learning Ruiz had nowhere to stay.

On May 31, 2008, Plano Police responded to a 911 call regarding a domestic disturbance.  Witnesses in the apartment next door reported they heard arguing, saw the victim’s body thrown against the window, watched him fall to the ground and observed a pool of blood form at his feet.  Ruiz then went back onto the balcony and made statements about killing the victim.  When the neighbors went to check on the victim, they saw Ruiz run out of the apartment with a knife.  While the victim’s friend tried to stop the bleeding, the neighbors attempted to catch Ruiz but ultimately lost him behind some nearby businesses.  The victim was transported to the hospital, where he was pronounced dead before doctors could operate.  An autopsy revealed that the victim died from multiple stab wounds.

Ruiz remained on the run for almost 8 years until he was arrested crossing the border from Mexico into Arizona in January of 2016.  Judge Scott Becker convicted Ruiz of the Murder.

During punishment, the State offered evidence of Ruiz’s prior convictions for other violent crimes as well as evidence of warrants for aggravated assault that were pending in Arizona at the time of the Plano, Texas murder.  Judge Becker sentenced Ruiz to life in prison.

The case was investigated by the Plano Police Department and lead Detective Beth Spillman.  The case was prosecuted by Assistant Criminal District Attorneys Ashley Briggs and Cynthia Walker.  They were aided by District Attorney Investigators Jared Clark and J.D. Spielman.

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