Austin, TX – The U.S. Marshals, working with Mexican officials, coordinated the deportation on May 16th of a Travis County resident who was sought by Manor Police Department following a 2016 hit-and-run incident in which a man was killed.
Thomas Bernal, 25, is charged with manslaughter and failure to render aid following the July 27, 2016, incident in the 13200 block of Maria Lane in Manor. He is alleged to have driven away from the scene of the accident in his black Cadillac, with the victim hanging from his vehicle. The victim, Devon Sanders, 19, sustained serious bodily injury and was pronounced deceased on the scene.
In October of 2016, the Manor Police Department obtained a warrant for Bernal’s mother, Debra Bernal, 51, of Elgin, for tampering with physical evidence. She is accused of transporting the black Cadillac into Mexico.
In November of 2016, the Manor Police Department requested assistance from the Lone Star Fugitive Task Force in the Austin Division to locate and apprehend both Bernals, who were believed to have fled into the Mexico to avoid apprehension.
The U.S. Marshals continued the fugitive investigation and contacted foreign officials for assistance in locating Thomas and Debra Bernal.
Thomas and Debra Bernal were detained May 16 by Mexican authorities and deported back to the U.S. port of entry in Hidalgo County, where they were handed over to members of the Gulf Coast Violent Offenders Fugitive Task Force, closing the six-year fugitive investigation.
Both Bernals are being held in the Hidalgo County Jail in Edinburg where they will await further judicial proceedings and extradition to Travis County, Texas.
Members of the Lone Star Fugitive Task Force in Austin:
Austin Police Department-Tactical Intelligence Unit
Georgetown, Round Rock and San Marcos Police Departments
Travis, Caldwell, Hays, Williamson, and Bastrop County Sheriff’s Offices
Texas Attorney General’s Office
Texas Department of Criminal Justice OIG
Texas Department of Public Safety
U.S. Immigration & Customs Enforcement
U.S. DHS/Homeland Security Investigations