Taylor accused of murder in Ramos, DeSilva cases
By Austin Sanders, 3:24PM, Wed. Dec. 13, 2023
Austin Police Officer Christopher Taylor will face trial again this fall for one of two murder charges brought against him by Travis County prosecutors.
Taylor stands accused of murdering Michael Ramos in 2020 and Mauris DeSilva in 2019, both while on-duty. At a pretrial hearing, Dec. 13, District Judge Dayna Blazey set a trial date of Sept. 23, 2024 for Taylor, but as of now, we don’t know for which case. Blazey said that was the earliest date the court could realistically take up either case because she already has a full docket, including 11 jury trials in which the defendants have been sitting in jail for a year or longer.
Last month, jurors failed to reach a unanimous verdict on Taylor’s guilt or innocence in the Ramos case, forcing Blazey to declare a mistrial, Nov. 15. In May, Blazey declared a mistrial in the case following a series of events that made seating a jury for the trial difficult.
At the Dec. 13 hearing, one of Taylor’s defense attorneys, Ken Ervin, argued that the state should first try the DeSilva case, because it has been left pending for longer and it would be “probably half the length” of the Ramos trial. Taylor and another Austin Police officer, Karl Krycia, were both charged with murder for fatally shooting DeSilva while he was undergoing a mental health episode and holding a knife.
Prosecutors did not comment at the hearing about trying the DeSilva case before the Ramos case. But Gary Cobb, a special prosecutor brought on for the Ramos case, said the state was ready to proceed with a retrial for Taylor in that case.
The parties will submit briefs on which case they think should be tried first and Blazey will issue a ruling at a March 8 hearing.
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