01:08 AM CDT on Friday, August 8, 2008
By Brad Woodard / 11 News
HOUSTON -- A truck driver who collided with and killed a Harris County deputy was set free on Thursday after all charges against the Mexican national were dropped.
Jose Vieyra had faced criminally negligent homicide charges in the death of Deputy Craig Miller. In February, on a Katy Freeway feeder road, the two collided.
Miller, a 20-year veteran who was married and had two children, was working undercover at the time of the accident. However, an autopsy revealed he was also intoxicated – by more than three times the legal limit.
The toxicology results have been questioned by Miller's family. Moreover, likely led to charges being dismissed against Vieyra.
“The (district attorney) filed a motion to dismiss the charges against Jose Vieyra, which the court has granted,” said Harris County Assistant DA Donna Hawkins. “The DA has legitimate and sufficient reasonable doubt about the evidence in this care that warranted the request.”
The ordeal had been arduous for Vieyra.
“Not only the arrest, but the death of Deputy Miller has affected him deeply, and he just has to pick up the pieces of his life and go on,” said Vieyra's attorney Lee Guerrero.
Vieyra was elated to be free.
“Thank God to those who uphold the law and justice,” he said in Spanish. “I hope God has in his glory, the man who died and helps his family. I'm going to ask God to bless them always.”
Still, Vieyra's day of vindication was also bittersweet. While he entered the country legally, his papers were expired at the time of the fatal accident.
Now, his faces deportation and is scheduled to appear before an immigration judge in November.