A man accused of killing three members of a motorcycle club dedicated to assisting law enforcement agencies in a drunken driving mishap in Kerr County on July 18 was living in the country illegally and had three arrests before the deadly crash on Highway 16, according to media reports.
Ivan Robles Navejas, 28, was charged with three counts of intoxication manslaughter with a vehicle and four counts of intoxication assault with a deadly weapon following the crash that killed Joseph Paglia, a retired police officer living in Chicago, Jerry Wayne Harbour, a retired U.S. Army lieutenant colonel living in Houston and Michael White, another U.S. Army veteran living in Chicago, all members of the Thin Blue Line Law Enforcement Motorcycle Club.
Media reports last week said Navejas remained in the Kerr County Jail in lieu of bonds totaling $500,000.
KENS 5’s Eyewitness Wants to Know team reported that the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement had lodged an immigration detainer against Navejas with the Kerr County Jail, claiming he is “an unlawfully present Mexican national.”
Navejas was a Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, recipient from 2013 to 2015, according to ICE records. His conditional permanent resident status expired in January 2019, making him an undocumented immigrant, the San Antonio Express-News reported.
Reports also said at the moment of the deadly crash, Navejas was awaiting trial on a 2018 felony aggravated assault charge from Bexar County.
In that incident, Navejas allegedly drove a Ford Ranger into a man in a parking lot of a restaurant, pinning him against another vehicle and then biting a portion of the man’s ear off during a subsequent assault.
ICE could not file a detainer against him at that time because of his conditional permanent resident status, KENS 5 quotes a statement from the agency as saying. It said Navejas was not subject to removal at the time.
Reports also say Navejas was arrested in November 2016 by the Texas Department of Public Safety on a charge of driving while intoxicated.
The Kerr County District Attorney’s Office apparently declined to prosecute the case, an employee with the Kerr County Clerk’s Office told reporters.
ICE officials said they encountered Navejas at the Kerr jail following the 2016 arrest, but he did not meet the agency’s enforcement priorities at that time.
Bexar County court records also showed Navejas had been arrested in 2013 and convicted in 2015 of evading arrest.
An employee of the Bexar County Jail’s records division told reporters last week that there was no record of an ICE detainer in Navejas’ 2013 arrest.
He reportedly was sentenced to two days in jail and was assessed $257 in court costs for that offense.
Investigators said Navejas was northbound on Highway 16 south of Kerrville on July 18 when he crossed the center line and barreled into a group of motorcyclists with the motorcycle club.
The Kerr County Sheriff’s Office said four other members of the motorcycle club were hospitalized in critical condition after the collision.
The club members had travelled to Kerrville from Bandera for lunch and were returning to Bandera when the accident occurred, a representative of the group said.
The motorcycle club was taking part in an annual meeting for the club’s foundation in Bandera.