Accused Deputy Killer Wants Trial Moved

Judge To Rule On Request Next Week

Author: Paul Venema, Reporter,
Published On: Nov 14 2011 11:32:30 AM CST   Updated On: Nov 10 2011 06:39:05 AM CST

The accused killer of Bexar County Sheriff's Deputy Kenneth Vann does not want to be tried in Bexar County.

Mark Anthony Gonzalez, 54, is facing capital murder charges in the assassination-style murder of Vann on the night of May 28, 2011.

Vann was stopped at a Southeast San Antonio intersection in his sheriff's department patrol car when he was shot and killed.

His lawyer, Michael Groos, asked 175th District Court Judge Mary Roman to move the trial out of Bexar County. The trial is scheduled for next July.

"I've never seen as much inflammatory prejudicial information provided by law enforcement regarding a capital murder case publicized in the media," Groos told the judge.

Getting a fair trial here an impossibility, he said.

Prosecutors countered, saying that finding 12 fair and impartial jurors among the 1.3 million prospective jurors in Bexar County could be done.

Prosecutor Julie Wright suggested that Gonzalez' lawyers motion for a change of venue did not meet the legal standards for such a request.

"The defense has not proven what they are required by law to prove, which was that there was pervasive, prejudicial and inflammatory publicity," Wright said.

Roman said she would consider the lawyer's arguments and review the evidence submitted during Thursday's hearing and announce her decision on the change of venue request at 9 a.m. next Tuesday morning.