On Tuesday in the 13th District Court, Jesse Raines pled guilty to the murder of Jimmy French III and accepted a 33-year plea agreement with the Navarro County District Attorney’s Office.
The body of French was found in a wooded area north of Dawson during investigation of a tip received by police nearly a year after his family reported him missing in June 2020. District Attorney Will Thompson stated, “This was basically a ‘cold case’ with minimal forensic evidence available due to the long delay between the murder and the recovery of the body. Nonetheless, detectives from the Navarro County Sheriff’s Office worked closely with the Texas Rangers to investigate the case.”
Thompson continues, “I want to express my condolences to the family of the victim and hope this brings some closure. I also want to thank and recognize the hard work of the Navarro County Sheriff’s Office and the Texas Rangers in this difficult investigation.”
Just before Thanksgiving, Alejandro Hernandez also pled guilty to one of the two counts of Aggravated Sexual Assault of a Child in the Navarro County Court at Law and was sentenced to 20 years in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice system.
When police responded to a disturbance at the Hernandez home, one of his daughters disclosed to the officer that Mr. Hernandez had molested her years before. An investigation led by the Navarro County Sheriff’s Office led to indictment of Mr. Hernandez. Subsequent investigation revealed that the victim was born when the victim’s mother was 15 years old. DA Thompson stated, “The victim and family chose to agree to a plea deal for 20 years rather than testify at trial.”
Upon his arrest, federal immigration authorities have placed a hold on Mr. Hernandez, which he will likely receive deportation upon completion of his prison sentence.