Update:One arrested and one on the run


Newscenter 25’s David Gibson spoke with Capt John Pape from the Goliad County Sheriffs Office Friday.

He says “The case is ongoing, so we will see if there are any additional charges on the individuals who have already been taken into custody or if there are any other individuals who are involved with this. At this time we feel that we have everyone that has a role in this relatively widespread investigation. However, we are continuing to investigate,” explains Capt. John Pape.


One juvenile is in custody while another is on the run after warrants were issued for them in connection with the murder of Nathan Cortinas.

The first juvenile, 15-year-old male, was arrested late yesterday at his residence by Goliad Deputies on charges of burglary, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, endangering a child, deadly conduct, engaging in organized criminal activity, and theft of a firearm. All of the charges are felonies.

A hearing was held before Judge Mike Bennett earlier today (Thursday, July 11) on the charges, and the juvenile was remanded into the custody of the Victoria Juvenile Detention Center until his next hearing. That hearing is scheduled for 9:00am on July 25.

The second subject, a 16-year-old male, is currently a fugitive from justice. He is charged with burglary, theft of a firearm, and engaging in organized criminal activity.

Since both suspects are juveniles, their names are not being released.

While both are charged in relation to the death of 20-year-old Nathan Cortinas on June 13, investigators do not believe either was at the scene of the shooting.

“These charges are the result of our ongoing investigation,” Capt. John Pape said. “We believe they were involved in certain events that led up to the shooting. We are unable to provide any additional details at this time since this is an ongoing criminal investigation.”

Cortinas was shot to death while seated in his vehicle in the 100 block of South Mount Auburn Street in Goliad, and his girlfriend, 18-year-old Brianna Bexley was seriously wounded. Cortinas died at the scene while Bexley is expected to recover from her wounds.

The alleged shooter has been identified as 18-year-old Daniel Mendoza, also a resident of Goliad. He is under arrest for capital murder and related criminal charges, and is currently in the Goliad County Jail.

Sheriff’s deputies were called to a residence in the 100 block of S. Mt. Auburn Street in Goliad shortly before midnight on June 13 for a reported shooting. Investigators found that the victim was in the driver’s seat when the shooter opened fire from outside the vehicle. Seven shots were fired from a small-caliber handgun.

The wounded female was in the passenger seat. She treated and released from Brooks Medical Center in San Antonio. A male infant, identified as the couple’s child, in the back seat of the vehicle was uninjured.

Mendoza initially fled the scene before deputies arrived but was taken into custody by Deputies Isaac Kimbrough, Mark Williams, and Andrew Lane sitting outside a local convenience store just before 5am on June 14. He did not resist arrest.

Investigators believe the shooting was the result of an ongoing dispute between the parties.

Sgt. Donna Starry is in charge of the investigation, which is ongoing. The Texas Rangers are assisting.

The information in this article was sent in a press release from Capt. John Pape with the Goliad County Sheriff’s Office.