George Cordova Executed For Joey Hernandez Murder

George Cordova was executed by the State of Texas for the murder of Joey Hernandez

According to court documents George Cordova and accomplices would approach Joey Hernandez and his date. Cordova would ask Hernandez to taking him to get gas but he refused. Cordova would attack Hernandez stabbing him with a knife and beating him with a tire iron. The woman would be dragged into the woods where she would be sexually assaulted

George Cordova would be arrested, convicted and sentenced to death

George Cordova would be executed by lethal injection on February 16 1999

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George Cordova - Texas

George Cordova Case

Viewed in the light most favorable to the prosecution the evidence showed[1] that on August 3, 1979, Jose (Joey) Hernandez, the deceased, returned to his mother’s home after cashing his $112.00 weekly pay check. Joey gave his mother $80.00 and put the remaining cash in his billfold. After washing his 1975 Chrysler automobile, bathing, and dressing, Joey left the house to pick up his date, Cynthia West.

The couple went to a movie and, shortly before midnight, drove to a convenience store where Joey bought four beers. Cynthia observed him paying for the beer and putting the change in his billfold.

At approximately 2:00 a.m. Joey and Cynthia drove to Espada Park. They parked in a small parking area lit by street lights. Shortly thereafter a car pulled up behind them. The driver of this vehicle was identified by Cynthia West as the appellant. Appellant (George Cordova) got out of this vehicle and approached Joey and Cynthia and asked for oil. Joey told appellant that he had no oil and appellant walked back to his vehicle and drove away. Shortly after this first encounter appellant returned with Manuel Villanueva and two other unidentified individuals. Appellant asked Joey to take them to get some gas, saying that his car had run out. Joey refused to take appellant anywhere because he saw a knife in Villanueva’s hand. At this time Villanueva hid the knife and said, “What knife? I don’t have a knife.” Joey then attempted to start his car to leave, but he was struck in the face by one of the four men. One of the men unlocked the door and then appellant and Villanueva attacked Joey.

Cynthia West testified she saw appellant (George Cordova) beat Joey in the head and face with a tire tool, while Villanueva stabbed Joey with a knife. As Joey was being murdered, the other unidentified men with appellant and Villanueva grabbed Cynthia West and dragged her to the opposite side of the car. Appellant then grabbed Cynthia West[2]*111 and forced her to run with him to a nearby wooded area. As they ran, appellant screamed at Cynthia to run or else he would “do the same shit to [her] as he did to Joey.” Appellant threw Cynthia to the ground and again threatened her if she did not do as told. When he shouted at her, appellant stabbed the tire tool into the ground, just a few inches from her head. Appellant jerked Cynthia up off the ground and forced her to run again. Appellant and the others dragged her into the bushes. They shoved Cynthia to the ground. Appellant undressed her, robbed her of her watch and jewelry, and raped her. Villanueva then raped her. Appellant walked to both cars. Villanueva watched as the third man raped her. Appellant returned and told the others to hurry and leave. The men then followed appellant to the cars and they drove off. After the men had left, Cynthia dressed and ran back to where she had last seen Joey. The car was gone and Joey was lying in a pool of blood.

Villanueva returned home at 4:00 a.m. on the morning of August 4 wearing a bloody shirt. Leon Springs testified that Villanueva returned home with some 8-track tapes, a man’s watch, a woman’s watch, and an empty wallet. Villanueva gave Leon the wallet. The wallet was positively identified as Joey’s. Cynthia identified her watch and Joey’s brother identified the tapes.

Two days after the offense, the police located Joey’s car in close proximity to both appellant’s and Villanueva’s houses.

Police recovered Villanueva’s bloody pocket knife at his home. The medical examiner testified that the pocket knife could have caused Joey’s fatal wounds; that Joey’s lacerations, abrasions, and broken nose could have been caused by a tire tool. Appellant did not testify nor did he offer a defense.

https://law.justia.com/cases/texas/court-of-criminal-appeals/1985/69005-3.html

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