Kyle mother charged in ‘horrific’ homicide

A Kyle woman has been charged in connection with the death of her five-year-old daughter in a crime law enforcement officials have deemed as one of the “most horrific cases in Hays County history.”

Krystle Concepcion Villanueva, 24, was charged with capital murder in the death of her daughter, Giovanna Larae Hernandez, whose death was ruled as homicide by stabbing, according to a Hays County press release. Hays County Sheriff Gary Cutler said a motive has not been determined. Villanueva was magistrated by Hays County Justice of the Peace Pct. 1-1 Joanne Prado.

Eustorgio Arellano-Uresti

Eustorgio Arellano-Uresti

Villanueva was also charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon after she stabbed her father-in-law, Eustorigo Arellano-Uresti, 58. Villanuenva is being held in the Hays County Jail on $800,000 bond for the capital murder charge and $300,000 for the aggravated assault.

At a press conference, Cutler said the HCSO received a 911 call at 12:51 p.m. Thursday for an aggravated assault call in the 200 block of Willow Terrace in the Green Pastures subdivision.

When authorities arrived, they discovered Uresti, who had suffered stab wounds across his forehead, on his back and left shoulder, according to a Hays County probable cause affidavit provided by Hays County Pct. 2 Justice of the Peace Beth Smith. An approximately ten-inch knife with a black handle was found in in his back left pocket, according to the affidavit.

Uresti informed officers that Hernandez was inside with Villanueva. Based on information from Arellano-Uresti, officials called SWAT, who arrived at the residence around 2 p.m., Cutler said.

When SWAT arrived, they entered the residence and took the woman into custody. According to the affidavit, Villanueva was nude and reportedly had the shower running as officers entered the home.

SWAT team members also found Hernandez’ body in the home, Cutler said.

An autopsy was performed on Hernandez’ body Friday, determining that she had died from multiple stab wounds. Cutler said Hernandez’ body had been “mutilated.”

“I’ve been in this line of work for over 43 years,” Cutler said. “This is one of the worst cases I’ve ever seen or been a part of. It’s one of the most horrific cases in the history of Hays County. It’s very sad.”

While the investigation is ongoing, Cutler said the HCSO has interviewed both Uresti and Villanueva.

Hays County Sheriff Gary Cutler provides media members information on an investigation involving the death of a five-year-old girl at a press conference at the Hays County Sheriff's Office headquarters in San Marcos. Photo by Moses Leos III

Hays County Sheriff Gary Cutler provides media members information on an investigation involving the death of a five-year-old girl at a press conference at the Hays County Sheriff’s Office headquarters in San Marcos. Photo by Moses Leos III

Uresti said that at 11 a.m. Thursday, he walked into the kitchen to prepare lunch when he allegedly saw Villanueva retrieve an knife and return to a back bedroom, according to the affidavit. He then could hear the victim crying.

Uresti said Villanueva then walked back into the kitchen and began stabbing him in the back, according to the affidavit. When he turned toward her, she stabbed him in the forehead before he attempted to take possession of the knife. Uresti bit Villanueva on the hand and he was able to take the knife away, according to the affidavit.

He then exited the home and went to a neighbor’s house, where he called authorities.

Uresti said he, the victim and Villanueva were the only people in the home. Cutler said that Villanueva had recently moved into the residence roughly a week ago.

Uresti alleged Villanueva used drugs including marijuana, according to the affidavit.

It is unknown if drugs or alcohol played a factor in the crime, Cutler said. A toxicology report is expected back within four to six weeks, according to a press release.

But according to the affidavit, a relative of Villanueva told authorities she had been admitted to a treatment facility in Buda in late 2015 for substance abuse, including marijuana, crack and meth. While in treatment, Villanueva was diagnosed with bi-polar disorder, schizophrenia and ADHD.

A witness alleged that when Uresti exited the home, they observed Villanueva standing between his and Uresti’s home with a gun and that Villanueva appeared to try to use the weapon.

Hays County District Attorney Wes Mau said more charges could be pending based on findings from the investigation.

“It’s a little early now to decide whether or not those are the charges presented to the grand jury,” Mau said. “They eventually have the final say on the charges filed.”

Mau added the DA’s office has made no recommendation on punishment until all charges are filed.


The Hays County Sheriff’s Office (HCSO) is investigating an incident that left a five-year-old girl dead and a 58-year-old man injured in Kyle Thursday.

Authorities have taken a woman, who was described as the mother of the child, into custody in connection with the incident, according to a Hays County press release. The identity of the woman has not yet been released

The HCSO received a 911 call regarding an aggravated assault at a home in the 200 block of Willow Terrace in the Green Pastures subdivision at 12:51 p.m.

According to the release, the first responding officer on scene discovered a 58-year-old Hispanic male with multiple stab wounds.

The victim reported that a female resident of the home had stabbed him. The man also told the deputy the woman’s five-year-old daughter had also been injured during the assault.

Due to information collection at the scene, the Hays County SWAT team was called and made entry into the home, where they discovered the deceased child.

The female suspect was taken into custody. The man was taken to an area hospital where he was treated and released.

HCSO is investigating the incident. A press conference will be held at 11 a.m. Friday.

This story is developing. We will provide updates as they become available.

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