San Benito man to serve three years after third DWI case

MGN Online

A San Benito man appeared at the Cameron County Courthouse for sentencing in his third DWI case in less than five years on Thursday morning in Brownsville.

Jesus Alberto Ontiveros Alvarez pleaded guilty to an instance of driving while intoxicated that happened Aug. 10, according to an indictment filed in September. Court records state that he was arrested at 9:57 a.m. the same day.

Alvarez was held on $50,000 bond following an appearance at the Cameron County District Court on Halloween, during which he pleaded guilty to a third degree felony related to the DWI charge.

During Alvarez’s sentencing appearance on Thursday, Cameron County state District Judge Janet Leal scolded state attorneys who had offered Alvarez a plea agreement in which he would be granted probation.

“I have a problem with this. This is the first time you’ve gone forward with a felony,” she said, referencing Alvarez’s two prior DWI cases. The incidents took place in Montgomery and Harris counties.

Attorneys noted that Alvarez will likely be deported as a result of his felony conviction. Leal responded, “If he comes back, which I know he will, you’re looking at 10 years in prison,” she said.

On the federal level, if a person who was removed from the United States for convictions of three misdemeanor crimes or a felony, they are eligible for a 10-year prison sentence and are also subject to fines.

Alvarez’s attorney Luis De La Garza wrote on an exhibit list included in the case record that he had informed Alvarez that his guilty plea would likely have immigration consequences. According to court records, Alvarez was born in Matamoros.

His prior convictions were included for consideration in his sentence. Alvarez’s attorney wrote that after consulting with his client, he accepted an alternative sentence offered by the court of three years in the custody of the Texas Department of Corrections.

esheridan@brownsvilleherald.com