AUSTIN — Travis County District Attorney José Garza was at home when he got a call from one of his prosecutors, Dexter Gilford. A grand jury had just indicted two Austin police officers, charging them with aggravated assault in connection with the beating and hospitalization of an unarmed Black man during a drug arrest in 2019.
Garza hadn’t even been district attorney for three weeks.
The indictments of Chance Bretches and Gregory Gentry that evening last January came years after the police department had cleared them of wrongdoing. They were still patrolling the streets. Now, felony warrants would be issued for their arrest. Gilford asked Garza: Should he call Austin’s chief of police to give him a heads-up?