A 50-year-old man was sentenced to 37 years in prison for killing a neighborhood acquaintance in Denver Harbor in broad daylight in 2021, Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg announced.
“Our hearts go out to the friends and family of this man, who was the victim of a premeditated, calculated and deliberate attack,” Ogg said. “It was important to get justice and we hope this conclusion gives peace and closure to the victim’s loved ones.”
Jose Gutierrez, 50, was convicted of murder and sentenced to 37 years in prison late Friday by a Harris County jury for the fatal shooting of 37-year-old Robert Andrew Almendarez around noon on October 8, 2021.
Gutierrez and Almendarez knew each other and had an ongoing dispute. On the day of the shooting, Almendarez was standing outside of a home on Eagle Pass with a friend when Gutierrez drove by in a red Jeep Cherokee.
Surveillance video showed that Gutierrez drove by, exchanged words with Almendarez, and then continued down the street. He turned around at the end of the block and drove back to where Almendarez was standing. Gutierrez stopped his Jeep, extended his arm out of his driver’s side window, pointed the gun at Almendarez and fired once.
Gutierrez hit Almendarez in the head, killing him. Gutierrez then tried to fire again, according to the victim’s friend, but the gun jammed and he drove away.
Detectives with the Houston Police Department were able to identify Gutierrez as the suspect. He was arrested days later.
During the six-day trial, jurors also heard that more than a month before the shooting, Gutierrez had fired at Almendarez while both were driving in the neighborhood. Almendarez did not report that shooting when it happened.
Assistant District Attorney Dana Nazarova, who is a chief in the DA’s Homicide Division prosecuted the case with ADA Sharica Gray.
“This was an intentional and cold-blooded murder,” Nazarova said. “The defendant stopped at the corner, took a good look and then came back and started shooting.”
Gutierrez must serve at least half of the sentence before he will be eligible for parole.
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