HAYS COUNTY, Texas (KXAN) – Not guilty. That’s how Isaiah Garcia, the former Hays County corrections officer who shot and killed inmate Joshua Wright, pled today.
He’s charged with deadly conduct for firing his gun in a hospital.
KXAN reached out to Garcia’s attorney but have not heard back yet. The Hays County Sheriff’s Office previously said Garcia no longer works for them.
His attorney waived his arraignment so he wasn’t at the court in person to enter his plea. But the Wright family was there.
They said the charge is not enough.
‘The closure is what I’m after’
Beverly Wright said she hasn’t been able to properly grieve the death of her son.
While awaiting trial in Hays County, Garcia took Wright to Ascension Seton in Kyle for medical treatment.
The sheriff’s office said Wright assaulted Garcia before trying to escape the room. They said that’s when Garcia shot and killed him.
Natalie Freeman, the Wright family’s pastor, said a deadly conduct charge is not enough.
“Justice would actually had been a murder charge,” Freeman said. “A life was lost in this case, and it was a precious life.”
Another big issue for family and friends is that they have yet to see the body camera video of what happened despite repeated calls for its release.
The Hays County District Attorney’s Office told KXAN they don’t plan on releasing the video yet.
“The District Attorney’s Office intends to continue to protect the video from release under the litigation and law enforcement exceptions to the public information act while this case is being litigated. A public release of the video prior to trial creates an unjustifiable risk of tainting the jury pool and making it impossible to select a fair and impartial jury in the case. It is important to our community that this case be tried in Hays County, by a Hays County jury. While we understand the public desire to see the video, a public release of the video right now could result in a change of venue due to pretrial publicity.”The Hays County DA’s Office
Still, the Wright family and friends said they won’t stop pushing to see it.
“I’m gonna continue to ask because I want to know what happened to my son,” Beverly said.
The family said Wright’s birthday is May 29. In honor of that, they are planning a memorial service that day at Memory Lawn Memorial Park in Martindale at 11 a.m.