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Judge drops Wallace case
After 16 years, 70-year-old Patsy Wallace is a free woman. This, after Judge Donna Rayes of the 81st Judicial District dismissed two felony charges against her Aug. 21.
Wallace was indicted May 22, 1997, on one count each of burglary of a habitation and aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, for allegedly breaking into the home of Jerry Ray “J.R.” Vaughan, before allegedly beating him with a baseball bat on Feb. 9, 1997. Wallace is the mother of Vaughan’s estranged wife, Patty Inez Brightwell Vaughan, who last was seen Dec. 25, 1996.
The case against Wallace sat dormant until court officials realized it never had been prosecuted. Wallace was called into court Aug. 6. Assistant District Attorney Audrey Louis of the 81st Judicial District said the defense filed for a motion to dismiss the case, because Wallace had not been granted a speedy trial.
“[J.R.] called the DA three weeks ago and insisted I go to trial on a 16 year-, 6-month-old case,” Wallace said in an interview following Rayes’ decision. “I don’t know what the motive is.”
Wallace has long alleged that J.R. murdered Patty, then 32, and buried her body in the back yard of the home the couple shared on Oak Park Road in Adkins. She said that while investigators from Bexar and Wilson counties and the Texas Rangers have performed searches in myriad locations, the back yard never was checked. This, Wallace said, despite reports from neighbors that they heard J.R. operating his backhoe for 90 minutes on Dec. 26, 1996.
Ultimately, Wallace said she wants Patty’s body to be found so that she might be given a decent burial.
“I hate the word ‘closure,’ because it never will be closure to me,” Wallace said.
Also present in court Aug. 21 were:
•Dallas Warren Crisp, 30, of Pleasanton, charged with one count each of burglary of a habitation and evading arrest or detention with a motor vehicle. The charges stem from a Jan. 15 burglary and subsequent police pursuit in Floresville. Crisp was set to enter a plea, after recently waiving his right to a trial by a jury. That matter has been rescheduled for Oct. 3.
•Roxie Jean Talarico, 19, of Pleasanton -- Crisp’s alleged accomplice -- is charged with burglary of a habitation and was in court for a docket call. Jury selection ahead of her trial is set for Oct. 3.
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