Armed Robber, Bampumim Teixeira, Given Light Sentence To Prevent Deportation, Brutally Kills Two Doctors At Home
Boston, MA – Prior plea deals that allowed Bampumim Teixeira to keep his green card and prevent his deportation cost two innocent doctors their lives last Friday, May 5.
According to The Boston Herald, police were called to the apartment after being notified by a friend of Dr. Fields that he had received a text message begging for help. Upon arrival, the suspect, Teixeira, opened fire on police, and was shot three times; he remains hospitalized.
Both victims, Dr. Richard Fields, age 49, and Dr. Lina Bolanos, age 38, were found bound, and with their throats cut. Teixeira forced Dr. Fields to watch in a mirror as his throat was cut.
Teixeira was arraigned in his hospital room on Monday, May 8, and he appeared unsconscious throughout the proceeding. His attorney, who represented him on his previous charges, entered not guilty pleas. He is expected to recover; unfortunately, his victims won’t.
In 2016, Teixeira was arrested by the FBI Bank Robbery Task Force for robbing a branch of Citizens Bank. He threatened to shoot up the bank if he didn’t get the money he demanded. The teller thought he had a gun and feared for her life. He only got $212, and a dye pack.
While being questioned about that bank robbery, he told police that he was also wanted for a 2014 robbery of the same bank. He got $600 that time, also while threatening to shoot up the bank. He was so helpful that he told detectives he had seen his wanted picture on the Mass Most Wanted website. Teixeira was shown the wanted picture of himself and told detectives that was him.
With two bank robbery charges, he should have served a lengthy prison sentence and then been deported, but he wasn’t. Under an agreed-upon deal, the prosecutor and the defense attorney allowed Teixeira to plead to two “larceny from person” charges instead of two bank robbery charges.
Plea deals like this are becoming more and more common as prosecutors in Palo Alto, New York, and Baltimore have all recently made the news for reducing sentences to prevent deportations. Legal non-citizen immigrants who are convicted of crimes with a sentence of 365 days or more are deported.
Recommendations were made to Judge Lisa A. Grant that Teixeira be given a sentence of 364 days in jail, one day less than a full year, with nine months to serve, credit for time served of 78 days, and the rest suspended for three years.
The most Honorable Judge Grant accepted the plea. This is the same Judge Grant who is fairly new to the bench, having been a defense attorney and public counselor services director in her previous career. She has also stated that she does not favor mandatory minimum sentences, because they take away a judge’s discretion.
What was also interesting about the plea deal was that Judge Grant accepted it orally, and did not require it to be in writing.
Both the prosecutor and defense attorney asked that the first robbery case be marked “guilty filed,” which exempts Teixeira from immigration penalties such as deportation.
A spokesman for the Suffolk County DA said that the plea was not accepted to shield Teixeira from deportation. However, it is clear that the plea was designed to do just that.
Outside of aggravated felonies, federal law states that any green-card holder like Teixeira who is convicted of two or more crimes involving “moral turpitude” is deportable. But since his case was filed as “guilty filed”, in a strangely retroactive move, it doesn’t count.
Federal courts have not yet acknowledged “guilty filed” as grounds to deport an illegal immigrant. As such, ICE said that it “has no legal role in this case at this time but will continue to monitor its progress.”
It is not known yet what connection Teixeira had to the murdered couple, but he once held a security job at their condominium complex.
And this was not just a robbery gone wrong. It is believed that there was a connection between one of Dr. Fields’ patients and Teixeira, although that is still being investigated.
Deportation rules are in place for public safety. Any prosecutor who intentionally circumvents those rules is giving violent felons permission to roam free.
Do you think that there should be a federal law which prohibits plea deals to prevent deportation? We’d like to hear what you think. Please let us know in the comments.