Murder victims' father not happy with plea bargain

Emanuel Vasquez accepts plea bargain of 40 years for Andrew Santos' death

Back in February of 2008, Andrew Santos was killed after he and his female passenger, Davina Tisthammer were chased across town in a road rage incident.

They stopped at the Amarillo Federal Credit Union, where their car was rammed by Emanuel Vasquez.

Vasquez escaped to Mexico, only to be caught more than a year later in El Paso.

A plea bargain was struck which netted Vasquez 40 years on the murder charge and 20 on aggravated assault, which will run concurrently, with no chance of parole for at least 20 years.

"By doing this today, it's guaranteed a sentence, he'll have to serve at least 20 years, basically it's final sentencing's over, no appeals, he's waved all this," said Randall Sims, Potter County District Attorney.

Andrew Santos' father, Martin, originally agreed to the plea bargain, but has since changed his mind, saying a guaranteed 20 years isn't enough.

"I think the parole date needs to be pushed back to 30 years at the least, because he's going to get out when he's about 50-58...somewhere in there, and that's enough time to be able to commit another crime and I don't think it's sufficient."

Sims noted that just because Vasquez comes up for parole in 2031 doesn't mean he will receive it. Martin Santos said he plans to be there to voice opposition at Vasquez's parole hearing.

You may recall that Andrew Santos and Alex Ballin, both Caprock High School seniors were hailed as heroes for rescuing a 93-year old woman after her home exploded from a gas leak in 2006.