McAllen, TX — Gabriel Quintanilla, 42, should have been in jail due to an active warrant out for his arrest for "continuous sexual abuse of a child." But he was not. Instead, he was allegedly allowed to continue abusing his 9-year-old victim — his own daughter.
When Quintanilla's stepsons found out about their sister's abuse, they decided that they were done waiting for police and reportedly made the decision to take matters into their own hands. Shortly after the teens found out about the abuse, Quintanilla's body was discovered in a Texas farm, he had been beaten with brass knuckles and suffered severe head trauma.
According to the Pharr police, the 9-year-old sister "made an outcry at an RV park" about her sexual abuse, at which point the two brothers, Alexandro and Christian Trevino decided enough was enough.
“When brothers Alexandro and Christian Trevino found out, they became enraged and confronted Gabriel Quintanilla at the residence. A physical fight ensued between the three and the victim Quintanilla left location on foot,” police said.
According to police, the brothers later found Quintanilla outside of an apartment complex where they attacked him for a second time. At this point, they were joined by one of their friends, Juan Eduardo Melendez.
“A second assault occurs there when Alexandro Trevino and a driver of a red Dodge Charger, Juan Eduardo Melendez, catch up and join the assault towards the victim,” police said.
Quintanilla once again escaped the beating but the three teens, all 18, found him once more and this is when their charges escalated from assault to murder.
“A third assault occurs and the victim is severely beaten. The victim who is still alive is placed in the bed of the truck and drove off and ended up in the McColl and Whalen Road (area) where the victim was dropped off in an open field and the suspects fled,” said police.
Police stated that Quintanilla was still alive when the three boys dumped him off in the field where his body was later found by a farmer. According to a report by MyRGV News:
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Alexandro is charged with aggravated assault and engaging in organized criminal activity while Christian and Melendez are charged with capital murder, aggravated assault and engaging in organized criminal activity.
In addition, Melendez is also facing a possession of marijuana charge.
Deputy Chief Juan Gonzalez said that Alexandro is not charged with capital murder because his brother and Melendez are the ones accused of dealing the fatal blows.
Section 12.31 of the Texas Penal Code defines capital murder as a capital felony offense. If convicted of a capital felony, the options for punishment are life in prison or the death penalty. The minimum age in Texas that a person can receive the death penalty is seventeen years of age or older. Both Christian and Melendez could be put to death for beating the alleged child rapist to death.
Rapper Big Boi shared a screen shot of a news article about the teens on Facebook, and the comments tell us exactly how people feel about their arrest. They are none too pleased. Below are some of the comments from the post.
What would you expect your sons to do if they found out? Free these young men. We need more like them
May the girl heal, the father rot in hell and the boys walk free.
Good job, youngsters! They put them in jail, im sending commissary money
Great job boys doing the right thing without a man to teach you. Should be applauded and exonerated immediately.
I see nothing wrong . He was wanted for sexually touching children. He got what he had coming to him. Free them. Their heroes in my book.
Another commenter brought up a good point. As we noted above, there was a warrant out for Quintanilla, why hadn't the police arrested him already?
Why didn't authorities intervene *before* it got to this point? ALL these kids are victims here. Sad, sad, sad.
There is a parallel to be drawn between these three boys and the case of Chrystul Kiser. Kiser was 17-years-old when she was arrested after she killed a man who was sex trafficking her as a child.
Like Quintanilla, Kiser's abuser was a known child sex trafficker — who should have been in prison. But police failed to arrest him, leaving Kiser with no choice but to take action.
Like these teens, Kiser's case drew lots of support and she was bailed out of jail last year after the Chicago Community Bond Fund and other supporters raised money to post her $400,000 bond. However, she still faces life in prison for killing the man who trafficked her.