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Louis Castro PEREZ





Classification: Murderer
Characteristics: Robbery
Number of victims: 3
Date of murders: September 10, 1998
Date of birth: January 8, 1962
Victims profile: Cinda Barz, 30; Michelle Fulwiler, 38, and Staci Mitchell, 9 (Cinda Barz's daughter)
Method of murder: Beating with a cast iron skillet / Strangulation with a pair of panty hose
Location: Travis County, Texas, USA
Status: Sentenced to death on October 20, 1999
Name TDCJ Number Date of Birth
Perez, Louis 999328 01/08/1962
Date Received Age (when Received) Education Level
10/20/1999 37 11
Date of Offense Age (at the Offense) County
09/10/1998 36 Travis
Race Gender Hair Color
Hispanic Male Black
Height Weight Eye Color
5' 10" 283 Brown
Native County Native State Prior Occupation
Travis Texas Carpenter, Laborer
Prior Prison Record
Summary of incident

On 09/10/98, in Austin, Texas, Perez entered the residence of a 38 year old white female and a her daughter, a 10 year old black female. 

Also occupying the home was a 30 year old white female. 

Perez struck the two adult victims on the head with a cast iron skillet, resulting in their deaths. 

Perez then strangled the 9 year old with a pair of panty hose, also resulting in her death.

Race and Gender of Victim
2 adult white females, 1 nine year old black female
Condemned killer's hopes rest on DNA evidence

News 8 Austin

April 4, 2006

For the 1st time, the family of an Austin man on Texas' death row is speaking out.

Last month, the Travis County District Attorney's Office said it would retest DNA evidence in the case of Louis Castro Perez, convicted in 1999 for 3 murders.

For Perez's sister, schoolteacher Delia Perez-Meyer, the search for the truth has been a 2nd full-time job.

"I spend most of my waking hours thinking about it. I live, eat, sleep and breathe Louis Castro Perez," she said.

Louis Castro Perez was convicted for the murder of Cinda Barz, Michelle Fulwiler, and Barz's 9-year-old daughter in their South Austin home.

"We never believed my brother committed that crime, never, not for a second," Perez-Meyer said.

Last year Perez's family asked the Travis County District Attorney's Office to take another look at some of the evidence, including items from the crime scene that were never tested for DNA during the trial. Two weeks ago the Perez family got their wish.

Perez-Meyer recalled visiting her brother in Huntsville to share the excitement.

"He says 'Did you hear the news?' and I said, 'Did you hear the news!' He said the guards woke him up at 2 in the morning and handed him the newspapers," she said.

Prosecutors are in favor of the DNA testing.

"It's the right thing to do. Mr. Perez is facing the ultimate punishment, the death penalty," Travis County Assistant District Attorney Buddy Meyer said.

Advances in DNA technology could lead to new information on items left at the crime scene, including a skillet, cigarette butts, a telephone cord, pantyhose and a towel.

That evidence is on its way to the Texas Department of Public Safety's crime lab, where it will be tested for new DNA samples. Any new DNA detected could belong to Perez, the victims or another person.

"The truth is going to come out. We know that the railroad serial killer murdered those girls," Perez-Meyer said.

She's referring to another man on death row, Angel Maturino Resendiz. Resendez has been convicted of one murder and is suspected in at least 14 other killings nationwide; all were committed near freight rail lines.

Perez-Meyer believes Resendez was the one who came to the home of Fulwiler and Barz, which sat just a mile away from the train tracks. Her brother was dating one of the women, and was the first to discover their bodies, and that is why police found her brother's handprint in blood at the crime scene, she said.

"It was just the epitome of being at the wrong place at the wrong time," she said.

The new DNA tests will look for any matches to Resendiz's profile, but they believe they had the right guy all along, prosecutor's said.

"I'm confident in the conviction of Louis Castro Perez for the murder of those three people. If I'm wrong then the system did what it needed to do and it worked," Meyer said.

It could take anywhere from a few weeks to two months for DNA test results come back, the DA's office said.

"We just want him to come home so we can all pick up our lives where we left off," Perez-Meyer said.



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