AUSTIN, Texas - Travis County District Attorney Margaret Moore has announced that she will delay the presentation of both Javier Ambler and Michael Ramos' cases to a grand jury in order for the newly elected District Attorney to handle them in January.
“The voters of Travis County have spoken. By overwhelmingly supporting a candidate for District Attorney who ran on a platform of changing how officer-involved shooting cases are prosecuted, I believe the community has clearly stated it would like to see the new administration oversee the prosecution of these cases from beginning to end," Moore said in part, in a statement released Wednesday.
Moore had previously planned to present these cases to a special grand jury to be empaneled in August. However, Moore conceded to her opponent, Jose Garza, in the Democratic runoff for Travis County District Attorney earlier in July.
Early voting results posted on the Travis County Clerk's website showed that José Garza received just over 68 percent of the votes cast so far in the July runoff election.
Moore went on to say that in the intervening months she is directing the Civil Rights Unit to continue preparing these cases for a grand jury as "if they were going to present the cases themselves."
Moore also stated, “These cases will be ready to present to the grand jury as soon as the newly elected District Attorney takes office.”
Read Moore's full statement below:
“When I created the Civil Rights Unit in this office, one of my main goals was to develop community confidence in the thoroughness and fairness of the process by which we handle officer-involved use-of-force cases. The voters of Travis County have spoken. By overwhelmingly supporting a candidate for District Attorney who ran on a platform of changing how officer-involved shooting cases are prosecuted, I believe the community has clearly stated it would like to see the new administration oversee the prosecution of these cases from beginning to end.
We are mindful of the possible pain and discomfort to the families of Mr. Ambler and Mr. Ramos by delaying the presentation to a grand jury. We have reached out to the families through their representatives to inform them of this decision and explained our reasons for doing so. We have taken into careful consideration all factors, including the impact this decision would have on the families, and believe that it is the responsible thing to do out of deference to and respect for what can only be viewed as the community’s mandate in the recent election specifically, in relation to how officer-involved shooting cases are handled.”