Man accused of robbing special needs man sentenced to life - KXXV-TV News Channel 25 - Central Texas News and Weather for Waco, Temple, Killeen |


Man accused of robbing special needs man sentenced to life

Ruben Alaniz Ruben Alaniz
MCLENNAN COUNTY - A McLennan County jury has sentenced a man accused of robbing a special needs man of his ring in 2012, to life in prison.

Ruben Miguel Alaniz was found guilty on an enhanced aggravated robbery charge for stealing a ring from Patrick Abel in 2012. The ring was given to Abel to mark his 10th anniversary as a McDonald's employee.

Closing arguments began Wednesday morning at 9 a.m. and the jury came down with the verdict about 10:30 a.m.

Alaniz took the stand in his own defense on Tuesday. He admitted to stealing the ring, but denied having a weapon and threatening Abel. He testified that he made a "terrible mistake and wishes he could take it back."

Abel's mother, Julia Story, says the ring meant everything to her son.

"Devastated is an understatement, but he had the fortitude to ride his bike down to the police station and file the report himself."
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