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Oscar Sanchez Kidnapping Case

The Tragic Abduction of Oscar Sanchez

January 2005 

 

 

 

Oscar Sanchez was abducted right off a residential street here in Dallas.  The city responded to pleas for help and a search ensued.  9 days later he was found deceased.  Despite tremendous efforts by the family, law enforcement and searchers, Oscar Sanchez was gone. Our sincerest condolences to the family and friends of Oscar Sanchez.  To follow are photographs, video and related information about this tragedy.  Specially selected music is available via the media player toward the lower part of the page.  

 

On Tuesday January 18, 2005, Oscar Sanchez was kidnapped.  A family member of mine, a private investigator, participated with me on the search for Oscar Sanchez and by a twist of events unimaginable to me at the time, I came within 15 feet of finding Mr. Sanchez 24 hours before he was found.   I was stunned the next day when I realized what happened.  Details about Mr. Sanchez, his obituary, video and photos follow.  The detailed information pertaining to our search is available via the link at the foot of this page, Kidnapping Details

 


UPDATE

Sept. 11, 2007, 2:31PM
Former teacher found guilty of restaurateur's murder
 

DALLAS — A former elementary teacher was convicted of capital murder Tuesday in the kidnapping and death of a Dallas restaurateur.

Jose Alberto Felix faces life in prison because prosecutors didn't seek the death penalty. Felix had denied being a willing participant in the 2005 kidnapping and death of Oscar Sanchez, whose family owns La Calle Doce and El Ranchito restaurants.


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News Reports On Story from the Start to End of Kidnapping

DSL Hi-Speed Internet Version Dial Up Slow Speed Internet Version

 

ABC News WFAA Channel 8 (Belo Broadcasting Corporation) News Reports on Discovery

(At 12:53 seconds you will see where Breaking News came on Thursday showing the reporter with the street sign behind her, which was when I first realized that he was on the street where I had been the day before.)

Funeral for Oscar Sanchez

Obituary, Oscar Sanchez    
OSCAR SANCHEZ, dearly loved husband, father, and son, died January 27, 2005, in Dallas, TX. He was the son of Rosa Laura and the late Oscar Guadalupe Sanchez, of Villa de Garcia, Mexico. Oscar was born in Dallas, Texas on October 14, 1974. Oscar attended Rosemont Elementary School, W. E. Griener Arts Academy Junior High School, and Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Art where he was a music major in jazz guitar. In 1997, Oscar graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a degree in Economics. In October of 2000, Oscar married his soul-mate, best-friend and love of his life, Theresa, in Villa de Garcia, Mexico. Oscar always put his family first. Even though they always made time for their friends and family, once his wife Theresa became pregnant, Oscar proudly stayed by her side, educating himself on the pregnancy process childbirth and raising children, even joking, in the beginning, that he had morning sickness along with his wife. Oscar described to his family and friends how the birth of his daughter, in December, was the fondest and most joyful memories of his life. In his professional life, he was a successful businessman and restaurateur. Oscar was the Associate Director of Operations of the El Ranchito and La Calle Doce Restaurants in Dallas, having started to take on some of the management responsibilities for the family business from his mother after his father died in 1997. He was a visionary, constantly learning and striving to do more and grow as a person and a businessman. He was extremely intelligent always staying abreast of world events. His friends and family would come to him for his insight and unique perspective from which they could learn and relate. He was also a forum member of the Young Entrepreneurs Organization, a member of the Texas Restaurant Association, Restauranteros Latinos de Dallas and the Oak Cliff Chamber of Commerce. His success only added to his warm, incredibly generous character. He is remembered by his family and friends for his humility and grace, how selfless he could be in making his closest friends feel special and loved. Oscar was always there for friends with his unmatchable capacity for making people happy. Oscar was a man who always had fun, with a full-bellied laugh, whose signature greeting was a kiss on the cheek and a squeeze of the shoulder. He was a fun, courageous leader always the first to jump off the diving board, step onto the dance floor, and tell a joke. Everyone who met him, even once or twice, saw him a close friend as he was one of the most kind and genuinely warm-hearted people they would ever meet. He was well-known as a music connoisseur compiling music for friends and serving as DJ at parties. Not only did Oscar love the Dallas Cowboys and Dallas Mavericks with passion, he also loved playing volleyball, football and basketball with his friends. Oscar was preceded in death by his father Oscar Jesus Sanchez, Sr. Oscar is survived by his beautiful and loving wife of 4 years, Theresa Sanchez and their infant daughter, Helena Sanchez; his mother, Laura Sanchez; grandmother, Natalia Varela; his sister, Silka Sanchez, his half brother, Mario Sanchez; aunts and uncles, Jesus Sanchez, Juan Sanchez, Alma Rubio, and Natalia Sanchez; and many cousins in Dallas and Mexico. The Rosary will be prayed by Very Rev. Ramon Alvarez, at 5:00 p.m., Sunday, January 30, 2005, at Sparkman/Hillcrest Funeral Home Chapel. The Funeral Mass will be celebrated at 1:30 p.m., Monday, January 31, 2005, at Cathedral Shrine of the Virgin of Guadalupe Catholic Church, 2215 Ross Avenue, Dallas, Bishop Charles V. Grahmann presiding. Interment will follow at Hillcrest Memorial Park in Dallas. Pallbearers will be: Jesus Sanchez, Juan Sanchez, Martin Reavis, Emilio Rubio, Burt Coty, John Lendvay, Luis Salazar, and Erick Valentin. Honorary Pallbearers will be: Silka Sanchez, Mario Sanchez, Alma Rubio, Natalia Sanchez, Elizabeth Sanchez, Vanessa Ibanez, Colleen Duerson, John Paul Coty, Rechelle Salazar, and Elio Monje. Memorials may made in memory of Oscar to the Helena Marie Sanchez Educational Fund, 9333 Stratford Way, Dallas, TX 75220. Please visit www.mem.com to leave a tribute for the Sanchez Family. Dignity Memorial Sparkman Hillcrest 7405 W. Northwest Hwy. Dallas (214) 363-5401
Published in the Dallas Morning News on 1/30/2005.

Oscar Sanchez Dallas Kidnapping Victim

Photos from Funeral Monday, January 31, 2005

The funeral was a beautiful service.  I had a bad case of the flu and stayed for about 30 minutes, standing in the very back the entire time to avoid getting anyone else sick.  There were about 2000 people there according to News 5.  It was a good turnout and about one fourth of the people stood in the back and along the sides of the church pews.   Communion was given.  Mr. Sanchez and his wife had their baby christened there 2 months earlier.

SENATE RESOLUTION NO. 126
 
 
In Memory
of
Oscar Jesus Sanchez
 
        WHEREAS, The Senate of the State of Texas joins the 
citizens of Dallas in mourning the loss of Oscar Jesus Sanchez, 
who died January 27, 2005, at the age of 30; and
        WHEREAS, Oscar Sanchez was born on October 14, 1974, in 
Dallas, Texas; he was the son of Rosa Laura and the late
Oscar Sanchez, of Villa de Garcia, Mexico; and
        WHEREAS, He attended Rosemont Elementary School, W. E. Greiner
Middle School and Exploratory Arts Academy, and Booker T. Washington
School for Performing and Visual Arts in Dallas and
majored in music, playing jazz guitar; he graduated from
The University of Texas at Austin with a degree in economics in 
1997; and
        WHEREAS, Oscar Sanchez was a successful and respected 
businessman and restaurateur; as associate director of 
operations of the El Ranchito and La Calle Doce Restaurants,
he had taken on management responsibilities of the family 
restaurant business after the death of his father; and
        WHEREAS, A loving and committed family man, Oscar Sanchez 
was devoted to his wife, Theresa, who was also his soulmate and 
best friend; they had a daughter, Helena Marie Sanchez, in 
December, and her birth was one of the most joyful moments of 
Oscar's life; and
        WHEREAS, Oscar Sanchez was known for his kindness, his 
humility, and his generosity; in addition to his fun-loving 
nature and positive outlook, he had a gift for making people feel 
welcome, and his warmth, wisdom, and wise counsel will not be 
forgotten by those who knew him; and
        WHEREAS, Oscar Sanchez was a devoted husband, father, son, 
and brother, and he leaves behind memories that will be cherished 
forever by his family and many friends; now, therefore, be it
        RESOLVED, That the Senate of the State of Texas,
79th Legislature, hereby extend sincere condolences to the bereaved
family of Oscar Jesus Sanchez:  his wife, Theresa Coty Sanchez; 
their infant daughter, Helena Marie Sanchez; his mother,
Laura Sanchez; his grandmother, Natalia Varela; his sister, 
Silka Sanchez; his half brother, Mario Sanchez; and his aunts and
uncles and many cousins; and, be it further
        RESOLVED, That a copy of this Resolution be prepared for 
the family of Oscar Sanchez as an expression of deepest sympathy 
from the Texas Senate, and that when the Senate adjourns this 
day, it do so in memory of Oscar Jesus Sanchez.
 
    President of the Senate
 
I hereby certify that the 
above Resolution was adopted by 
the Senate on February 10, 2005, 
by a rising vote.
 

 

My hope is that information regarding the abduction of Oscar Sanchez can help others both avoid a similar situation and if it did occur, a way to better insure their chances of survival.  The other thing about this is the sheer audacity of individuals that would snatch a young father off of the streets of Dallas.   The suspects could have walked away, let Oscar go and disappeared.  Sadly, and so often is the case with kidnappings, things go horribly awry.  There are no simple kidnappings for those foolish enough to consider a crime like this.  See the movie "Fargo" and you'll have an idea of how bad kidnappings go, if this story about Oscar Sanchez does not already make this perfectly clear.  We must lose the mentality I believe of catching kidnappers on the spot.  We have evolved past the point of needing to catch kidnappers in the act.  Give them their money, and get the person back safely, immediately.  I do hope to see a shift from catching the kidnappers to only getting the victim home safe initially.  Once that occurs, law enforcement can have the suspects for lunch if they want.    We just need to adapt some of the emerging technologies over to this particular brand of crime.   Let technology do the work for you.   

 

 

AMBER ALERT FOR KIDNAPPING VICTIMS?

 

Would an automated alert similar to the Amber Alert for children be warranted in kidnapping cases despite the victims age?  Or would this have a negative impact on the children's version?   In kidnapping cases it is not even prudent to let the media know what is happening until a failed money drop or some other critical turn takes place in the case, but once it does, a full automated response by the community could increase the chances of successfully returning the victim safely.  It may be that this increasingly popular crime in Mexico may be migrating northward as well.  Additionally, currently civilian officer programs are common across the country now, where citizens can be trained to perform certain functions for officers that are less volatile than full duty.  Could private investigators who have passed a rigorous background screening process be pulled in to provide assistance to their police counterparts, detectives, in a situation where something severe happens like a kidnapping and multiple leads or information has to be investigated simultaneously.  Like the officer program but on a detective level.  The screening process would have to be top notch and possibly have more frequent verifications and re-application periods. 


 

    Abduction and Kidnapping Prevention Tips for Parents and Guardians   

 

High profile abductions of children, although a rare occurrence, have left many families frightened and unsure about how to protect their children. The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children is a wealth of information on child safety and abduction prevention. You can visit their website at www.missingkids.com, or call them at 1-800-The-Lost (1-800-843-5678).

These are just a few of their helpful tips.

Teach your children to run away from danger. If someone tries to grab them, tell them to make a scene and make every effort to get away by kicking, screaming, and resisting. Their safety is more important than being polite

Never let your children go anywhere alone

Know where your children are and who they are with at all times.

Talk openly with your children about safety.

Have a list of family members or friends who can be contacted in an emergency

Be alert to and aware of your surroundings

Know your employees. Do background screening and reference checks on everyone who works at your home, particularly those who care for your children

Take steps to secure personal information about yourself. Be discreet about your possessions and your family’s personal habits and information

Report any suspicious persons or activities to law enforcement immediately

Remember – you are your own best resource for better safeguarding your family. Do not become complacent about personal security issues.

For more details on these valuable child-safety tips, visit the website of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children at www.missingkids.com

 

Another tip of my own and I may be incorrect about this but a secret password only known between parent and child would seem like a good idea although that should be verified with experts.   If the child is told the parent instructed someone else to take the child, they should know the password and the password should be changed after each use.

 

Broken Wings - Take My World Apart

 

Press > Play button below for specially selected music.

January 2006: It has been a year now since Oscar Sanchez was taken away from his family and friends.  I have selected this song especially for them and for those that still get tears in their eyes just thinking about him.  I submit the second song, Take My World Apart by Jars of Clay, as it was the single most important song in my own efforts to get back onto the straight and narrow path toward Heaven.

"Let no man put asunder what God hath joined together."  Matthew 19:6

 

Broken Wings

Baby don't understand why we can't just hold on to each others hands
this time might be the last I fear unless I make it all to clear
I need you so ... oh ohh ohhhhhhh

Take these broken wings and learn to fly again
learn to live so free and when we hear the voices sing
the book of love will open up and let us in

take these broken wings ..........

Baby I think tonight we can take what was wrong
and make it right ... mmmm ... Baby it's all i know
that your half of the flesh and blood that makes me whole
need you so
 

So take these broken wings and learn to fly again
learn to live so free and when we hear the voices sing
the book of love will open up and let us in Yeah Yeah

Let us innnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnn, Let us innnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnn
 

Baby its all I know, that your half of the flesh and blood that makes me whole, yeah yeah yeah yea yeahhh

So take these broken wings and learn to fly again
learn to live so free
and when we hear the voices sing the book of love will open
up and let us in

Take these broken wings you've got to learn to fly
learn to live and love so free
and when we hear the voices sing the book of love will open
up for us and let us in
yeah yeah  ...   yeah yeah ... o ohh ohhh

Take My World Apart  -  Jars of Clay  -  Acoustic Version

I am the only one to blame for this
Somehow it all adds up the same
Soaring on the wings of selfish pride
I flew too high and like Icarus I collide
With a world I try so hard to leave behind
To rid myself of all but love
to give and die

To turn away and not become
Another nail to pierce the skin of one who loves
more deeply than the oceans,
more abundant than the tears
Of a world embracing every heartache

Can I be the one to sacrifice
Or grip the spear and watch the blood and water flow

To love you - take my world apart
To need you - I am on my knees
To love you - take my world apart
To need you - broken on my knees

All said and done I stand alone
Amongst remains of a life I should not own
It takes all I am to believe
In the mercy that covers me

Did you really have to die for me?
All I am for all you are
Because what I need and what I believe are worlds apart

[Additional lyrics:]

I look beyond the empty cross
forgetting what my life has cost
and wipe away the crimson stains
and dull the nails that still remain
More and more I need you now,
I owe you more each passing hour
the battle between grace and pride
I gave up not so long ago
So steal my heart and take the pain
and wash the feet and cleanse my pride
take the selfish, take the weak,
and all the things I cannot hide
take the beauty, take my tears
the sin-soaked heart and make it yours
take my world all apart
take it now, take it now
and serve the ones that I despise
speak the words I can't deny
watch the world I used to love
fall to dust and thrown away
I look beyond the empty cross
forgetting what my life has cost
so wipe away the crimson stains
and dull the nails that still remain
so steal my heart and take the pain
take the selfish, take the weak
and all the things I cannot hide
take the beauty, take my tears
take my world apart, take my world apart
I pray, I pray, I pray
take my world apart

And Hallelujah ...

_______________________________________________________________________

View Our Case Information about what happened and our efforts to find Oscar during those 9 days where time seemed to stop for so many:

 

Satellite Images, Photos, Maps, Video — is now available with the following link:

Kidnapping Details

_______________________________________________________________________

 

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This page was originally setup securely as a means to communicate information on the case during the search and since then has been made public with full details of what transpired.

 


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