Testimony begins in capital murder trial of accused killer of physicians assistant

Jury views dramatic police bodycam video of Jonathan Perales' arrest

By Paul Venema - Reporter

SAN ANTONIO - Testimony began Tuesday in the capital murder trial of a man who is accused of killing a physician assistant in 2017.

Clayton Robinson, 51, was awakened in the predawn hours of October 10, 2017, by an intruder in his home in Universal City. That intruder, according to the indictment, was Jonathan Andrew Perales, 19.

Prosecutor Rose Zabell told the jury Robinson shouted, “Get out of my house,” as he confronted Perales outside the bedroom of his home.

“He opens the door and shots rang out,” Zabell said during opening arguments Tuesday morning in Perales’ capital murder trial.

Robinson was killed. Perales, who was shot in the chest, fled to his car and drove off.

Prosecutors said that Perales apparently became disoriented as he drove away and eventually stopped at the home of Christopher Carson, his next-door neighbor.

Unaware of the home invasion and shooting, Carson called for and police and an ambulance.

When officers arrived, Perales could be heard on the body camera video of a Universal City police officer pleading for help.

“Please call an ambulance. Please, you don’t understand. I’m about to die,” Perales said. 

Officers found a gun in Perales' pocket. Prosecutors said it was the weapon that was used to kill Robinson.

Perales was arrested, taken to the hospital and later charged with capital murder. In his opening statement, his lawyer, Jeff Mulliner, said that his client will testify during the trial and admit that he shot Robinson.

“He was in the wrong man’s house. He was doing the wrong thing, and he was making a wrong choice,” Mulliner said.

He said that, although Perales had a troubled childhood, that was no excuse for what he did that night.

If he is convicted, Perales is facing a life sentence without the possibility of parole. Testimony will resume Wednesday in Judge Melissa Skinner’s 290th District Court.

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