Defendant Sentenced in Brutal Eric Torrez Murder

SAN ANGELO- The last defendant in the brutal kidnapping and murder of Eric Torrez has been sentenced to prison in a plea deal Friday. 

David Navarro, 47, took a plea deal in District Court and will spend the next 25 years in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice.

Navarro pleaded guilty to the charge of aggravated kidnapping of Eric Torrez. As part of the plea deal, the charge of capital murder has been abandoned. To obtain the plea deal, Navarro agreed to completely and truthfully answer all questions posed by law enforcement and agreed to testify truthfully in the trials of all co-defendants.

On July 27, 2017, David Navarro, Angella Wray, Kristen Dean, and Stephen and Garry Jennings schemed to get Eric Torrez from Abilene to Duckworth Road near San Angelo.

Dean and Garry Jennings went to Abilene to get Dean’s and Torrez’s daughter while Stephen Jennings waited at a residence on Duckworth Road for Torrez.

Eri Torrez was contacted by Stephen Jennings about a bid on a construction job and when Torrez arrived to the residence, he was ambushed by Stephen and Navarro and held against his will.

According to testimony, Torrez was restrained, bound, and began arguing with Stephen with Navarro in at the residence.

Navarro contacted a former girlfriend and explained he had “f***ed up” and met with him in a parking lot on Sherwood Way in San Angelo. Navarro showed the witness a video on a smartphone.

The witness described the victim, Torrez as beaten and bleeding from his head and mouth. His eyes were swollen, and he looked tired and wore out. Torrez moved his head to get away and was not speaking. Then, a subject stepped in front of the video and physically struck the victim.

Eric Torrez was eventually shot in the head by Stephen Jennings.

Gary and Stephen moved the body and dumped it in a rural area of Crockett County.

David Navarro was the last of the five individuals involved to be sentenced.

Garry Jennings was sentenced to 20 years on May 16, 2022. His son, Stephen Jennings, was sentenced to life in prison in December 2021. Angella Wray received a 10-year prison sentence and Kristen Dean received a 25-year sentence.


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