A former Killeen Daily Herald crime reporter leaked documents he said show officer misconduct in the arrest of Marvin Guy, 52, during the execution of a “no-knock” search warrant May 9, 2014.
Guy is accused of capital murder and three counts of attempted murder in the death of Killeen police officer Charles “Chuck” Dinwiddie and wounding of three other officers during the raid.
Clay Thorp, a former employee of the Herald who resigned in August and is currently employed with the New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung, said in a Dec. 3 interview with thefreethoughtproject.com that a series of documents titled “Marvin Guy Defense File Review Notes” reveal Killeen police officer Juan Obregon Jr. assaulted Guy during Guy’s arrest.
The documents have yet to be verified by any legal party involved in the case.
Guy’s case is still in the pretrial phase after more than 2½ years. Paul McWilliams, Bell County’s first assistant district attorney, refused to comment on the case Monday but said a status update hearing was planned to be scheduled this month.
Guy most recently appeared in Judge John Gauntt’s 27th District Court in Belton on Sept. 29 for a status update hearing.
The four pages released by the online publication came from the defense file, according to Thorp. They include a bulleted list of the file’s contents, including a summary of Dinwiddie’s autopsy and medical records, and two reports from officers who assisted in executing the search warrant.
In Obregon’s listed report, the officer says he struck Guy in the face with his pistol and shoved the weapon into Guy’s mouth after learning about Dinwiddie’s fatal shooting.
“I became very enraged with anger and the suspect began to speak so I struck him with my pistol in the mouth area,” the report reads. “I did not strike him hard enough to cause him any visible marks however; I did enter his mouth with my pistol.”
Obregon is still employed with the Killeen Police Department. Former police Chief Dennis Baldwin declined to comment on the case.
“There is a court-issued gag order in place on this case, so we are limited on what can be released. However, it is customary for the police department to investigate all allegations of misconduct,” Baldwin said.
In the article, Thorp claimed he received the documentation from both Guy and a member of Guy’s family, who Thorp said had compiled all of the case files from Freedom of Information Act requests, and Guy’s attorney at the time.
The trial was put under a gag order Sept. 17, 2015, under which both the district attorney and defense were ordered by Gauntt’s court to not release information on the trial to the public.
Guy is currently represented by Carlos Garcia, of McAllen, who could not be reached for comment Monday. Guy has had three separate defense attorneys since his arrest.
Thorp said his investigation into the Guy case beginning in early 2015 led to friction with the Killeen Police Department — which alongside the city of Killeen indicated to the Herald in July that it would no longer cooperate with Thorp.
Baldwin, who was chief of police at the time of Guy’s arrest and is now interim city manager, denied Monday that Thorp’s investigation led to his effective blacklisting with the city and said Thorp had a history of interfering with police and city operations.
Because of this, the department opened an investigation into Thorp in June 2016.
According to an administrative review, Thorp was investigated after several verbal altercations with Killeen police officer Bradley Blenden in which Blenden accused Thorp of flouting designated media areas at crime scenes and putting himself in danger, and Thorp alleged Blenden had threatened to arrest him despite press privileges.
The investigation was ultimately closed and no charges were filed.
Hilary Shine, the public information officer with the city, said Thorp had also been reported multiple times by city employees for inappropriate behavior on the job.
“I received a number of complaints over the time he worked at KDH, all with similar concerns about not obeying restricted areas on scenes or speaking to staff in a rude, threatening or condescending manner,” Shine said.
The combined allegations of misbehavior led then-interim City Manager Ann Farris — on behalf of the city and Baldwin’s department — to inform the Herald that Thorp was persona non grata with city staff and police, and none of them were going to respond to questions from Thorp when he was reporting.
The Herald management then reassigned Thorp to another reporting area before his eventual resignation.
In the online article about Guy, Thorp said Guy, a black man, may not be receiving fair treatment in the public eye because of his race.
Thorp described the neighborhood where Guy resided as a “small-time war zone.”
“It was a violent area where he lived. ... It seems to me he had reason to be protective,” Thorp told the web writer. “He lived in a rough area you know.”
The road on which Guy lived — Circle M Drive — is a one-block section between Fort Hood Street and Old Farm-to-Market 440. In 2014, one other violent crime was reported — an assault with bodily injury.
According to several search warrants obtained by the Herald in July, Killeen police on May 9, 2014, were acting on information from a drug informant who told police Guy was in possession of an undisclosed amount of cocaine for distribution and sale, as well as a handgun. Guy was convicted of bank robbery in 1997, making it illegal for him to possess a handgun.
The Killeen Police Department still uses “no-knock” search warrants.
Guy is still being held in the Bell County Jail on $4.5 million bond.
Editor's note: A previous version of this story said KPD had ended the practice of "no-knock" search warrants. The police department can still use a "no-knock" search warrant when justified.