ARANSAS PASS, Texas — Murder charges are pending against inmate serving a life sentence at the Texas State Prison in Huntsville in connection with a 26-year-old cold case murder in Aransas Pass.
Aransas Pass police say Gilbert Davila has been charged with the murder of then 53-year-old George Smith in 1994 in Aransas Pass.
Aransas Pass Police Department Capt. Kyle Rhodes received correspondence from Davila in October. In the letter, Davila asked to discuss the 1994 slaying.
Davila was suspected in Smith's death. But at that time, investigators did not feel they had sufficient evidence to pursue charges, and the case went cold. All the evidence and statements at that time pointed to Davila, Aransas Pass police said.
At that time, Davila and his estranged wife were separated due to relationship problems. Davila made death threats against her for leaving him. As a result, the estranged wife stayed the night elsewhere for her own protection. The following morning, she awoke to learn that her stepfather, George Smith, had been murdered.
Davila reported to investigators during a recent interview in prison that he did not go to the Smith residence with the intention of committing murder. He intended to force his wife to go home with him, but he was also not in his right mind because of drugs and alcohol.
While at the Smith residence, events escalated, resulting in Smith's shooting.
Davila explained to police that he is coming forward now after turning his life to God. He said it was only appropriate that he resolve his previous crimes and sins, and needed to make full disclosure on Smith's death.
"We commend Gilbert for coming forward to do the right thing," Aransas Pass police said in a Facebook post. "Even more, our thoughts and prayers go out to the Smith family and friends affected by this tragic crime. We hope the ensuing criminal case against Gilbert in this matter will help bring complete closure to the family."