Second man gets life in bar brawl shootings

Dallas: 23-year-old pleads guilty to triple slaying near SMU

09:38 PM CDT on Tuesday, July 10, 2007

By JENNIFER EMILY / The Dallas Morning News
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A Dallas man who popped out of a Jaguar's sunroof and gunned down three men with an assault rifle after a bar brawl was sentenced to life in prison Tuesday.

Israel Barretero pleaded guilty the day testimony was to begin in his trial for the March 2005 slayings at Mockingbird Lane and Central Expressway near Southern Methodist University.

The driver of the Jaguar, Jimmy Velasquez, was already sentenced to life in prison for his role in the slayings. Neither man had an arrest record at the time, but police referred to the pair as "thugs."

Family members of the slain men sobbed and wailed as they told Mr. Barretero, 23, how killing the men changed their lives.

Chef Eddie Pech, 36, Bernardo Andrade, a 21-year-old bouncer, and his cousin Favio Andrade, a 19-year-old deli cashier, were killed. A fourth man was injured.

Graceal Andrade, Bernardo's mother, ordered Mr. Barretero to look at her as she spoke.

"You are brave enough to fire a weapon," she told him. "Be brave enough to look at a mother you broke."

Ms. Andrade, who clutched a photo of her son and his infant twin daughters, at one point yelled at him not to lower his gaze.

Ms. Andrade said that even though her Catholic beliefs say she should forgive him, she cannot.

"I damn you," she said. "God gave life to my son. God was supposed to take it away, not you."

Favio Andrade's mother, Maria Solis, showed less anger on the stand but was just as tearful.

"It's been bad. ... That sadness, that big sadness that we feel has never ended," Ms. Solis said. "If he knew he was guilty, how come he waited until now?"

The women's comments came during victim impact statements where relatives can say whatever they would like to a defendant. They are not part of the guilt and innocence phase of a trial.

Mr. Barretero and his attorney, Paul Brauchle, declined to comment.

The slayings occurred after a Monday night gathering at Jack's Pub on Yale Boulevard. The two groups of men fought and one was hit with a beer bottle.

Mr. Velasquez and Mr. Barretero dropped a third man off at a hospital for stitches and returned to the bar. Shortly after the car left the bar, witnesses saw someone in a white Jaguar – like the one Mr. Velasquez had been driving – begin shooting at their car at the intersection of Mockingbird Lane and the Central Expressway service road.

Mr. Barretero was originally indicted on two charges of capital murder and aggravated assault. He pleaded guilty to murder and aggravated assault. He will serve two life sentences and a 20-year sentence concurrently.

Following the sentencing, relatives of the three dead men cried and hugged prosecutors Michael Jarrett and Carmen White.

"I think justice was done," Mr. Jarrett said.

Before bailiffs escorted Mr. Barretero from the courtroom, state District Judge Susan Hawk told him: "Good luck, Mr. Barretero. You're going to need it."

Jack's Pub has since closed, and the land was purchased by SMU.

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