New information delays hearing for murder suspect

El Paso News

EL PASO, Texas (KTSM)- A bond hearing has been rescheduled for the teenager suspected of the murder of a Fort Bliss Soldier.

As previously reported, Joseph Anthony Rocha, 17, is accused of shooting and killing 21-year-old DeAngelo Merriweather at a house party in the 3800 block of Truman October 19.

Court records show Rocha’s bond hearing has been canceled four times for various reasons.

Rocha’s defense attorney, Justin Underwood, was expected to present at least one witness at today’s hearing to prove his client acted in self-defense when he fired at Meriweather.

Today Underwood says, “I have about nine people that we have met with who are going to give statements to the police department indicating that the deceased in this case, pulled a firearm on my client and his brother and threatened their lives leading to my client responding with deadly force.”

Rocha has been in the El Paso County Detention Center on a $3 million dollar bond for Murder since his October arrest.

Underwood says he is now working on making his nine witnesses available to give statements to the police department before a judge can make a decision on the case.

Rocha is also accused of shooting and injuring Asia Knight, 21; Juan Mata, 18; Kevin Marincuellar, 19; and Markendy Dessources, 22 in the melee.

According to records, Rocha fled the scene of the house party and was apprehended after an hours-long SWAT standoff he live-streamed on Facebook.

The defense attorney has requested a rescheduling of the bond reduction hearing until sometime next month.

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