Court records paint picture of last week in Ray Marchan's life
Sat, 02 Mar 2013 02:02:52 GMT —
Federal court records shed light into the last week of a Brownsville attorney who took his life by jumping off the Queen Isabella Memorial Causeway.
Attorney Ray Marchan ended his life early Thursday morning.
Preliminary autopsy results released Friday afternoon show that he died from blunt force trauma to the head and drowning.
Toxicology reports remain pending but court records show Marchan was supposed to report to a federal prison in Fort Worth at 2 p.m. Thursday.
The Brownsville attorney had been sentenced to three and a half years for his role in the cash for court favors scandal involving former 404th State District Judge Abel Limas.
But Marchan had filed an appeal and was fighting his conviction and sentence.
On Monday, just days before his suicide, Marchan filed an emergency motion with the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals.
The Brownsville attorney asked to remain free on bond while his appeal was being reviewed by a panel of judges.
Marchan argued that he had serious legal questions and concerns about his trial and needed more time to obtain transcripts from his June 2012 trial to draft a proper appeal.
The Brownsville attorney also argued that he had a special needs son.
Although his son is an adult, Marchan reported that was the sole caregiver.
Neighbors, family friends and doctors all wrote letters standing up for Marchan TMs character adding that his son suffered from a severe case of autism.
But federal prosecutors filed a response on Tuesday opposing Marchan TMs motion.
Prosecutors told the judge that Marchan got a fair trial and that he could file his appeal from behind bars.
They also wrote that family or friends were capable of taking care of Marchan TMs son.
His son was diagnosed with autism long before Marchan committed the serious crimes for which he was convicted, appeals prosecutor Renata Gowie wrote in her response. Although his concern for his son may be genuine, Marchan is now using his son TMs autism as a means to avoid responsibility for his crimes.
Judge TMs Decision
U.S. Fifth Circuit Court Judge Edward C. Prado sided with prosecutors and issued a order denying Marchan TMs request on Wednesday.
Marchan took his life early Thursday morning taking a taxi cab from his home on Fireside Drive in Brownsville to South Padre Island.
The Brownsville attorney told the taxi cab driver that he was sick and needed to throw up.
Marchan asked the cab driver to pull over while they were driving on the bridge but instead of throwing up, the Brownsville lawyer jumped.
Both Prosecutors and the U.S. Attorney TMs Office declined to comment about Marchan TMs death.
Although Marchan lived in a $463,000 dollar home in an affluent Brownsville neighborhood, court records show that his bank account didn TMt match.
The Brownsville attorney had previously made millions of dollars in high-profile wrongful death lawsuits.
But in a motion filed in federal court in January, Marchan reported that he only had $497 dollars in his bank account.
Marchan TMs defense attorneys Noe Domingo Garza and Adela Kowalski-Garza could not be reached for comment on Friday.
Kowalski-Garza now works as a prosecutor with the Cameron County District Attorney's Office but the couple filed a motion to withdraw as his defense attorneys back in January.
Garza and Kowalski-Garza reported that they had represented Marchan for free due to his bleak finances.
The defense attorney couple filed the motion to withdraw as his attorney because their firm does not represent appeals.
This information is not offered to place Mr. Marchan in a bad light with the court but to give the court an insight as to Mr. Marchan TMs finances in his request for a free transcript and attorney on appeal, the couple wrote in their motion.