HOUSTON (KIAH) — A man who was 17 when he killed a classmate worth more than $250 has been sentenced to 35 years in prison after pleading guilty to the murder this week, Harris County District Attorney Kim said Thursday. Ogg.
Jesse Quinones, 22, pleaded guilty to the murder on Wednesday in exchange for a 35-year prison sentence for the murder of 17-year-old Patrick Aldape around 11:35 p.m. April 13, 2017. Quinones will serve at least half of his sentence before he becomes eligible for parole. He is not allowed to appeal his conviction or sentence.
“Obviously we have an epidemic of gun violence with teenagers shooting each other for money in a gun exchange,” Ogg said. “Getting justice for the victim’s family in a case like this that has been pending for years is exactly why we recently created a homicide unit in our office and staffed it with some of our top prosecutors.”
Quinones was an ACE (Accelerated Center-Education) student when he brought a 9mm pistol to a meeting with Aldape at a cul-de-sac at 500 Slumberwood in the Northshore area. The quinones were working on a shotgun that belonged to Aldapa.
Prosecutors said the two teenagers met at a stalemate and Quinones gave Aldape a gun wrapped in a towel and Aldape put it in the trunk of his car. Aldape then reminded Quinones that he also owed Aldapa $250 and Quinones said he needed to go and get the money.
Instead, he drove off a few blocks, loaded his 9mm pistol, and returned. When he returned, Aldape approached the car and Quinones shot him from the driver’s seat. Then the quinones were fired several more times. He later told investigators that he kept shooting because Aldape was screaming and “I had to finish.”
Quinones then fled and crashed his car a mile and a half away in the 500th block of the Federal District. According to prosecutors, he fled the scene of the accident, leaving the murder weapon behind.
A woman who was with Aldape at the time of the shooting drove him to Clear Lake Regional Medical Center, where he later died. The woman, who still had a shotgun in her car, threw the weapon into the bushes, where police later found it, prosecutors said.
Days after Aldape’s death, Quinones went to the Houston Police Department store to confess. After homicide detectives completed their investigation, Quinones was charged with capital murder.
Since Quinones was 17 years old at the time of the shooting, he could face a life sentence with the possibility of parole after 40 years. As part of the plea agreement, he pleaded guilty to murder, not capital murder.
Assistant District Attorney Casey Little, who handled the case, said solving the case is a priority.
“It’s good that we finally got a decision on this case for the family,” Little said. “They have been waiting to close since 2017 and our office is prioritizing older murder cases so we can give the families the justice they deserve.”