ARCOLA, Texas – A suspended Arcola police officer accused of sexually assaulting a woman during a traffic stop last week had his bond reduced by a Fort Bend County judge Tuesday, but probably not enough to ensure his release while he awaits trail
Hector Aaron Ruiz, 24, is accused of stopping a female motorist in Brazoria County earlier this month, then taking her to a location in Fort Bend County where he coerced her into having sex with him.
Ruiz faces a felony charge of sexual assault and a misdemeanor charge of official oppression. Bond was originally set at $200,000 for each count.
But in court Tuesday, defense attorney David McClure told judge Maggie Jaramillo that Ruiz’ family can’t raise the money to post bond.
“The family put all their money together and they can come up a total of about two to three thousand dollars.” McClure told the judge. “They don’t have any luxury assets or bonds or stock to sell, (nor) they’ve had any successful attempts of getting a loan together. They basically had to have friends and family pull together the money to retain counsel and for purposes of bond.”
McClure asked to have Ruiz’ bond lowered from a total of $400,000 to $20,000 for both counts.
Prosecutor Terese Buess didn’t argue the amount, but she asked the judge to review the evidence in the case before making her decision.
“The only thing I would ask the court to very seriously consider is the nature of the offense and circumstances under which it was committed. That this defendant was a peace officer with the Arcola police department and that he pulled this complainant over under color of law and forced her to submit to his authority.” Buess said.
The judge settled on a reduced bond of $100,000 for both counts but still well above what Ruiz’s attorney says the family can raise.
Ruiz faces up to 20 years in prison if he’s convicted on both the sexual assault charges, and up to 1 year in jail for the official oppression charge.