By Frances Gomez Saul Marquez Silvas of Fort Stockton was scheduled for trial on Oct 29. The trial has been postponed due to a change in district courts. On Jan 8, 2012, Silvas stabbed his girlfriend, Brittnay Lanay Cartwright, to death. Silvas was arrested and put in jail with a $500,000 bond. On Feb. 1, Judge Pete Gomez, presiding judge of the 112th District Court, reduced Silvas’ bond to $75,000. The court found that the original $500,000 bond, which kept Silvas in jail, was excessive. 83rd District Attorney, Jesse Gonzalez, stated that bail is not designed to be punishment and doesn’t always correspond with the alleged crimes of the accused. Silvas was not deemed to be a flight risk and was ordered to report to adult probation.
Silvas has a curfew of 6pm to 6am daily and must wear a home-monitor that he has to pay for on his own. Rod Ponton, incoming 83rd district attorney, won’t be prosecuting the trial due to a conflict of interest. Ponton circulated a petition to have Silvas put back in jail after Gomez lowered the bond. Over 333 people, according to Permian Basin 360, signed the petition. No action was taken on the petition. Gonzalez said it would be better to move the trial to the 112th District Court because his term will be ending soon. “I have requested that the case for Silvas be moved, I do not think I will have enough time to see the trial through,” said Gonzalez, “with moving it over to District Attorney, Laurie English, the case has a better chance of being tried sooner. “ Defense attorney, Albert Valadez, filed a motion on Silvas’ case for a change of venue. A change of venue would move the trial to a different town within the 83rd district. “The case has had too much media attention in this town and I believe it would be wise to move the case to a different location, “ said Valadez.