Collin County District Attorney Greg Willis has announced that Artemio Yanez, aged 56 and a resident of Plano, has been sentenced to life in prison after pleading guilty to Murder. The decision comes in the wake of a horrific incident where Yanez brutally stabbed an innocent victim 63 times, leaving the victim, Emilio Romero, dead.
The incident occurred on June 8, 2021, at 6:00 p.m., when Plano Police Officer Jonathan Theis responded to a stabbing call in a parking lot in east Plano. While en route to the scene, dispatch received updated information indicating that the suspect had fled in a white van, with a witness to the crime following closely behind.
Upon arrival at the scene, officers found Emilio Romero unconscious and bleeding in the driver's seat of his van. Meanwhile, other officers managed to stop the suspect's van and detained Yanez, who was shirtless and appeared to have blood on his arms and cheek. A search of Yanez's van led to the discovery of a bloody 6-inch knife.
A second eyewitness who was present in the parking lot came forward with a video recording of the incident. The video showed Yanez standing outside Romero's van on the driver's side, repeatedly stabbing Romero, who was seated in the driver's seat. The autopsy later confirmed a total of 63 stab wounds on Romero's body. The motive behind the murder remains unclear, as no prior confrontation between Yanez and Romero could be established. Both individuals appeared to be living in their vans for an extended period.
During the punishment phase, prosecutors presented additional evidence of Yanez's violent behavior towards other inmates and detention officers while in the Collin County jail. They also highlighted Yanez's prior convictions, including assault bodily injury and driving while intoxicated.
Taking all this evidence into account, Judge Angela Tucker sentenced Artemio Yanez to life in prison. The prosecution team consisted of Assistant Criminal District Attorneys Ashlyn Scott, Calli Bailey, and Justin Dotzel, who were assisted by District Attorney Investigator Stephanie Strickland.