SAN ANTONIO – Bexar County District Attorney Joe Gonzales said Monday he has no plans to reopen the cases of three high-profile SAPD officer-involved shooting deaths in San Antonio.
Families of two of the men gathered Sunday for a peaceful protest in Milam park with hopes new attention on the cases would lead to the cases being reopened.
“Whenever there’s a murder by police, we as families relive this, over and over and over again,” said Debbie Bush, the aunt of Marquise Jones, who was shot to death by an off-duty SAPD officer in February 2014. “We are fighting to have our case reopened and looked at."
Jones, 23, was killed outside a Northeast Side Chacho’s by Officer Robert Encina who was working security at the restaurant.
The officer said he approached the driver’s side of a Cadillac after the car rear-ended another vehicle in the drive-thru, according to a previous KSAT 12 report. Encina said he saw marijuana and alcohol in the vehicle, along with a gun that was allegedly stashed between Jones’ legs who was sitting in the front passenger seat.
As Encina struggled to handcuff the driver of the vehicle after getting him out of the car, Jones exited from the other side. Encina and another restaurant employee, Anthony Molina, testified in court that they both saw Jones raise a revolver about chest high and point it toward them.
That’s when Encina fired eight shots with one hand from the opposite side of the vehicle as Jones fled the scene.
According to the autopsy report, Jones was struck once in the back, killing him.
Jones’ family sued Encina and the city for damages in federal court, claiming Encina used excessive and unreasonable force and violated Jones’ constitutional rights. They also claimed the city investigation was a cover-up and that SAPD’s lack of supervision and discipline led to the incident.
However, a jury later ruled against Jones’ family, claiming Encina didn’t use excessive and unnecessary deadly force.
A Bexar County grand jury had already separately cleared Encina of criminal wrongdoing.
Charles Roundtree, 18, was shot as officers responded to an assault call at a home in the 200 block of Roberts Street on Oct. 17, 2018.
Roundtree was in the home with 24-year-old Davante Snowden and another man. Officers said Snowden did not respond to commands and reached for a gun in his waistband. Officer Steve Casanova opened fire on Snowden, but also shot and killed Roundtree who was in the line of fire. Snowden survived his injuries.
Police said the home was a drug house they had been called to dozens of times.
A Bexar County grand jury voted July 18, 2019, not to indict Casanova and he was cleared of all charges.
Snowden last year was acquitted of criminal charges from the case.
Roundtree’s adoptive mother was at Sunday’s protest and she said ultimately, she is grateful for the community support.
“I am appreciative of these people coming out and also bringing his name and putting his name back out there, and Marquise’s name back out there. This is what we wanted. They are not be forgotten,” said Roundtree.
Antronie Scott, 36, was killed on Feb. 4, 2016, after Officer John Lee pulled him over at the Wood Hollow Apartments near Isom and East Ramsey roads.
Lee was called in to assist undercover officers in arresting Scott, who had outstanding warrants, police said.
In 2016, San Antonio Police Chief William McManus said Lee feared for his life when he saw something in Scott’s hands that he thought was a gun but turned out to be a cellphone.
Lee was originally handed an indefinite suspension, but McManus changed his mind and ordered Lee to undergo training instead.
Scott’s widow, who was in the vehicle at the time of the shooting, filed a lawsuit against the SAPD, the city of San Antonio and Lee.
Federal court records show Scott’s mother also filed suit, and the cases were later consolidated.
A trial date of March 30 was postponed because of the COVID-19 pandemic and no new trial date has been set, records show.