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Monday, April 2, 2007

Registered sex offender found murdered in home

Of all the deaths recorded in this blog, this case stands out because ALL of the news reports are virtually identical, and that is not the case with any other of the over 400 deaths. The one fact that ALL news reports dance around is "WHY" and there seems to be a coverup on that point. At that time in history the Adam Walsh Act was about to be signed, and my gut wonders if it had anything to do with the "WHY" in this case. The killer here was arrested in 2008, following the signing of AWA.

3-12-2006 California:

Jack LaRue Hood Jr.’s death from a single gunshot wound on March 12 marked the first murder of the year in San Marcos and the third murder in San Marcos in the last four months.

Until November 2005, the city had not seen a murder since 2003.

A Hays County deputy was dispatched at about 11:45 a.m. on March 12 in response to a welfare concern. Upon arriving at Hood’s home, the deputy discovered the San Marcos resident dead from a single gunshot wound.

Hood lived in the 4800 block of Trails End, a typically quiet residential area, said Sgt. Leroy Opiela, a public relations official at the Hays County Sheriff’s Office.

Officials at the Sheriff’s Office would not say if there were any suspects or evidence of a struggle, as the case is still under investigation. Opiela said that so far, all that investigators knew for sure about Hood was his name, date of birth and where he lived.

“We know very little about the murder,” Opiela said. “I can tell you that it was the first one in Hays County this year.”

Hood was a registered sex offender with the San Marcos Police Department, which may or may not be related to the murder. He was charged with possession and promotion of child pornography in 2001.

Opiela said this evidence was “enough to make us look into it further.”

“We’re not ruling that out, but that’s not the primary focus of the investigation,” Opiela said. “We’re going to retrace this man’s steps to find who was with him and what he was doing. We’re looking for a killer — who killed him and why they killed him.”

Hood was an active member of the San Marcos Chamber of Commerce’s Ambassadors Club before his criminal charges. Hood was responsible for the chamber’s hosting of events, ribbon-cuttings for local businesses and other public relations work. Chamber of Commerce President Phil Neighbors described him as a positive asset to the chamber.

“He was a friendly, outgoing person when he was in our ambassador’s group. My recollection is that he was an active member and faithful in his responsibilities,” Neighbors said. ..more.. by Jacqueline Davis


Seven-month-old murder still a mystery

3-12-2006 California (Original Date):

There were things people didn’t know about Jack Larue Hood. For instance, not everyone he played golf with at Quail Creek Country Club knew he was a registered sex offender.

But as much as the one-time utility contractor who once served as country club president and Chamber of Commerce ambassador would have liked to have kept that secret, he surely would have wanted to reveal the one he may have taken to the grave — the identity of his murderer.

Hood was found dead in his home in the 4800 block of Trails End just south of San Marcos more than seven months ago. The 49-year-old had been shot once in the back at some unknown time, apparently by someone who then took his Chevrolet pickup, which was later found abandoned.

That’s about all the information authorities have released into the intriguing case.

“We’ve got some theories but we can’t prove them,” Hays County Sheriff’s spokesman Sgt. Leroy Opiela said on Friday. “We’ve got no witnesses, no evidence to tie anybody to anything.”

No motive has ever been suggested.

Detectives investigating the case won’t even say who it was that placed the call for someone to check on Hood’s welfare on March 12, or why they won’t release that information.

Playing cases close to the chest isn’t unusual, especially when it concerns murder — too many details, investigators say, could disrupt or even corrupt the work they have already accomplished.

Yet detectives still won’t answer direct questions from reporters. Opiela said Friday that’s not likely to change, despite the fact that the case has already been featured as a Crime Stoppers Crime of the Week, entitling anyone who could provide good information to a reward of up to $1,000, while assuring anonymity.

Hood pled guilty to possession of child pornography in 2002 after an attorney general’s task force found his name on the subscriber list of an illegal web site. He was originally indicted on 10 counts but a plea bargain agreement led to reduced charges and a sentence of five years probation.

He was registered as a sex offender by the San Marcos Police Department and the Hays County Sheriff’s Office.

The murder shocked the normally quiet neighborhood, where more than a few law enforcement officers live. Opiela acknowledged that the case is still on the minds of many. He said in a recent staff meeting, a question about the case was put to Chief Detective Mitch Johnson.

“The other morning someone asked him,” he said. “We’re still working on it but have not had much success.”

Anyone with information is urged to call the HCSO at 393-7800. Callers who wish to remain anonymous and qualify for a reward may call Crime Stoppers at (800) 324-TIPS toll-free from anywhere. ..more.. by Anita Miller


Former resident confesses to 2006 murder


San Marcos — The arrest of a former San Marcos resident in the 2006 slaying of a registered sex offender should make local residents sleep better, Hays Sheriff Allen Bridges said at a Monday press conference.

According to attorneys for suspect David Paul Hicks, so will he.

Hicks, 32, confessed on Friday to the murder of 49-year-old Jack Larue Hood. Hood’s body was discovered on March 12, 2006 in his home in the 4800 block of Trails End. He had been shot once in the back.

Hood’s pickup was also stolen but recovered later.

Bridges would not comment on any possible motive in the case; and Hicks’ attorneys Robert Updegrove and David Sergi would not say whether he knew Hood.

They did say Hicks, whose last address was in McAllen, had lived and worked in the San Marcos area and had suffered a head injury that went untreated sometime prior to the murder.

“He was extremely remorseful. He wanted to bring closure to the family,” Sergi said. “It was very much out of character for him.”

Hood pled guilty to possession of child pornography in 2002 after an attorney general’s task force found his name on the subscriber list of an illegal Web site. He was originally indicted on 10 counts but a plea bargain agreement led to reduced charges and a sentence of five years probation.

Hood was registered as a sex offender with the San Marcos Police Department and Hays County Sheriff’s Office. He was also a former president of Quail Creek Country Club and Chamber of Commerce ambassador. Hood and his brother ran a local contracting company.

Sergi also said that Hicks had a history of mental illness after his head injury and had at one point been committed to the Austin State Hospital. “He didn’t have insurance and couldn’t get (the head injury) treated.”

He characterized his client as a man whose life had spun “out of control.”

The attorneys said Hicks came to their office on Tuesday of last week, and that they had contacted the District Attorney’s Office prior to accompanying him to the Sheriff’s Office on Friday to make the confession.

Bridges, who repeatedly said the investigation is still ongoing, said he is “satisfied we have the right suspect,” though details of the confession are still being verified. “At this point the citizens of San Marcos and Hays county can feel safe.”

Bridges said Hicks had been arrested once in Hays County since the murder on a check charge but was never considered a suspect in the homicide.

Hicks is charged with first-degree murder. Justice of the Peace Joann Prado set his bond at $500,000. ..Source..

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