AUSTIN (KXAN) - Several law enforcement agencies in Central Texas are searching for a man who walked out of the courthouse during a lunch break in his aggravated sexual assault trial and never returned to court.
A jury later found Pedro Javier Quintero, 22, guilt on five counts of aggravated sexual assault and sentenced him to 48 years in prison.
"He's dangerous, I think, because he probably feels like he has nothing to lose," said Caldwell County prosecutor Katy Alsobrook. "I think he's in San Marcos somewhere. As far as we know that's where all of his family and friends are. I don't think he has any connections outside this immediate area."
Quintero was on trial for a 2009 incident at a mobile home community in Maxwell where five men participated in giving alcohol to a 15 year old girl and then repeatedly sexually assaulted her. Two others had already been convicted in the crime prior to Quintero's trial.
"He has a history of not only crimes against property, criminal mischief type things, but also violent crimes against people," said Alsobrook.
Quintero is currently on probation for aggravated robbery in Hays County.
He was on bond during his trial and able to come and go from the courthouse during breaks along with others in the trial.
Alsobrook said the entire court took a recess for lunch on December 6, shortly before the case went to the jury, with the understanding they would return by 1:15pm.
"I was very surprised he did not return. He informed some family members in the courtroom that he was not planning on returning," said Alsobrook. "It was a very stupid decision on his part. This defendant obviously has a history of making poor decisions but he's now going to be charged with a failure to appear bail jumping charge, a second degree felony."
The Lone Star Fugitive Task Force is assisting in the search for Quintero.
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