Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Jurors Acquit Father of Burglary Charge in Assault

Home invasion stemmed from his rage over alleged offense

A district court jury refused to convict a Laguna Park man
in a case of burglary of a habitation Monday.

Tried in the 220th District Court at Meridian, the
indictment alleged that Charles Albert Sundy forced his way
inside the home of Jason and Teresa Marr with the intent of
assaulting a young man he believed has assaulted his
juvenile daughter.

A co-defendant, Christopher Koehn, paid a $500 fine and
served three months in the county jail after arranging a
plea agreement and admitting his guilty plea to criminal
trespassing in the same incident on January 2, 2010.

As testimony unfolded, jurors learned that on August 2 of
2009, Mr. Sundy received a telephone call in which a person
told him a young man who had allegedly assaulted his
daughter had entered the Marr home to visit with their
juvenile daughters.

The alleged assault is still under investigation, according
to knowledgeable sources.

Had he been convicted of the second degree felony of
burglary of a habitation with intent to cause bodily harm,
Mr. Sundy would have been subject to not less than 2 nor
more than 20 years in the penitentiary and a $10,000 fine.
As a person who has never before been convicted of a felony
crime, he is eligible for probation and completed a pre-
trial application to receive a suspended sentence if the
jurors assessed his punishment at 10 years behind bars, or

According to his defense attorney, Abel Reyna of Waco, Mr.
Sundy gained access to the dwelling through the permission
of a child who was unauthorized to act for the actual

There was no evidence he forced his way inside the home, he

Mr. Reyna is a Republican candidate for District Attorney of
McLennan County. He opposes incumbent John Segrest, who has
held the position for many terms.

He heaped praise upon the five-man, seven-woman jury.

"I thank the jurors for their careful consideration. They
really did look at the facts and they really did take care
in their decision," he said, following the verdict. "I just
want to thank them for their service and because they did
such a good job."

Mr. Reyna noted that during their deliberations, the jurors
called for evidence to be brought to the jury room twice.
They wanted to look at crime scene photos and they had
argued over the testimony of the investigating officer as to
whether there was a forceful entry of the dwelling.

"There was no evidence of damage to the door or the
threshold," said Mr. Reyna. "You see, he had gone there to
confront the young man - to talk to him. When he got back
to the kitchen area, he lost control and assaulted him."

He acknowledged that photos showed extensive property damage
to the kitchen, the room where the alleged beating took

Mr. Reyna is the son of Mr. Justice Felipe Reyna of the 10th
Court of Appeals, which sits at Waco. Justice Reyna was at
one time a deputy probation officer and later District
Attorney of McLennan County.

In an earlier interview, his son Abel Reyna, the criminal
defense attorney, said that if elected district attorney,
his clients will always be the people of the state of Texas,
and no one else. He is campaigning on a promise to become
involved in the community, to establish a presence among the
people and bring justice to their neighborhoods as a working
prosecutor who actually tries cases and not the kind of DA
who makes plea offers all day long.


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