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Drug dealer testifies as capital murder trial begins

Gary Barnhardt slain during drug deal turned attempted robbery

SAN ANTONIO – The state’s first witness Monday in the capital murder trial of Charles Robnett, 20, was an admitted marijuana dealer.

Albert Ramirez, 20, testified that he and his partner in a marijuana dealing business, Gary Barnhardt, 20, had agreed to meet Robnett and two others – all 18 years old – in a deal to sell the trio a small amount of marijuana on the night of Oct. 16, 2017.

Instead of buying the marijuana, Ramirez testified, the teens tried to rob them at gunpoint.

3 charged in killing over marijuana have charges upgraded to capital murder

“I just remember grabbing it, throwing it away from the car away from us,” Ramirez told the jury as he recalled how Robnett pointed the gun at him as he and Barnhardt sat in Barnhardt’s car.

The next thing he said he remembered was ‘a lot of shots being fired.’

“There was so much smoke that, Gary ended up telling me to move him over, so I did try to get help and that’s when I drove to HEB,” Ramirez tesfified.

That is where police found him and Barnhardt. He was shot in the hand, Barnhardt was mortally wounded.

Though this is a capital murder case, the state is not seeking the death penalty. If convicted, Robnett is facing life in prison without the possibility of parole.

The two teens with him that night, Michael Aguilar, 18, and Emmanuel Herrera, 18, are awaiting trial.

Testimony in Robnett’s trial will resume on Tuesday in Judge Frank Castro’s 399th District Court.


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