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Increased calls for hate crime charge to be added to murder of Texas rancher Aaron Martinez

Kaufman County Sheriff's patrol car
Tony Gutierrez
Kaufman County Sheriff's patrol car

San Antonio Congressman Joaquin Castro wants a North Texas man charged with a hate crime for the murder of a Latino man.

Aaron Martinez was allegedly murdered by his neighbor, Trevor McEuen.

Castro told TPR that McEuen repeatedly harassed the Martinez family and told them Latinos were not welcome in Kaufman County, just outside of Dallas.

"In fact, they had gone to the police before. And had harassed at least another Hispanic man or family," Castro said. "So this was a guy who obviously was carrying out an agenda of hate."

Martinez was found dead with multiple gunshot wounds in his truck. Deputies said they saw McEuen drive away from the scene. He was later arrested following a standoff with police.

Castro said he hoped the Kaufman County District Attorney will charge McEuen with murder that includes a hate crime charge — something the Martinez family has also called for.

"But if the state is unwilling to do it, if the District Attorney is unwilling to do that, then the federal government should step in and prosecute under federal law," Castro said. "Texas is becoming a dangerous place for Latinos because state and local authorities refuse to take our safety seriously."

Castro cited the case of a group of migrants fired upon by two brothers in West Texas last fall and were never indicted.

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