Posted: Jan 17, 2013 4:30 PM
Updated: Jan 17, 2013 4:45 PM
HIDLAGO COUNTY - A man stabbed multiple times during an alleged burglary attempt went before a judge on Thursday.
The stabbing happened Monday afternoon at a home near the intersection of Business 83 and Mile 2 ½ East Road near Mercedes.
The homeowner's sister said her brother suffered several cuts during the incident.
"He went walking towards the hallway and saw somebody through the crack of the door ... about to come out," the homeowner's sister said.
"He didn't know if the guy was armed or what his intentions were. He rushed him and he started stabbing him," she said.
The homeowner stabbed the burglar about five times in the chest. The intruder later showed up at Knapp Medical Center in Weslaco. He told police he had been stabbed at a store in Mercedes. He was arrested and taken to the county jail.
The suspect, Eduardo Martinez, on Thursday was charged with burglary of a habitation. His bond was set at $250,000.
The homeowner's sister said the intruder took out a window air-conditioning unit to access the house. The family said a large tree may have helped conceal Martinez as he broke into the house.
The large tree fell in front of the house and partially blocked the view from the highway. The family said the Texas Department of Transportation was responsible for removing the downed tree.
Family members said they have been trying to get TxDOT to remove the tree since it fell in September.
"It's getting to the point where I'm telling my father we're going to have to actually go to the office in Pharr because we're not getting any responses from phone calls. We sent text messages to the guy's cell phone and still nothing," the homeowner's sister said.
TxDOT officials on Thursday admitted that they have known about the problem since September. A department spokesman said they were working on other high-priority projects. In the end, he admitted they didn't follow through.
TxDOT on Thursday sent a crew to remove the tree. The house is now visible from the highway.
The family said that in addition to Monday's incident, someone tried to kick in the door a couple of weeks ago.