Orange County District Attorney
Tony Rackauckas, District Attorney
401 Civic Center Drive West
Santa Ana, CA 92701
For Immediate Release
Susan Kang Schroeder
PAROLE DENIED FOR MAN WHO STRANGLED AND MURDERED LIVE-IN GIRLFRIEND IN 1991
SANTA ANA – The Board of Parole Hearings, California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitations, denied the parole yesterday, May 10, 2011, of a man who murdered his live-in girlfriend by strangling her to death and wrapped her body in a blanket before abandoning it in the Cleveland National Forest. Kevin Frank Henriques, 40, Riverside, is currently being held at Avenal State Prison in Avenal, CA. Henriques was sentenced March 19, 1993, to 15 years to life in state prison after being convicted by a jury. Henriques will be eligible for his next parole hearing in 2016.
The Orange County District Attorney’s Office opposed the parole and Senior Deputy District Attorney Steve McGreevy of the Homicide Unit appeared at the hearing to defend public safety and advocate for justice.
1991 Murder of Theresa Cacho
On Jan. 3, 1991, Henriques, then-19, and girlfriend Cacho, 20, were living together in a Riverside home and got into an argument. Henriques handcuffed the victim, stuffed socks wrapped in a plastic bag into her mouth, and strangled and murdered her. When roommate 18-year-old Brian Davidson returned home, Henriques admitted to Davidson that he had murdered Cacho. Henriques and Davidson wrapped the body in a blue blanket and put her in Henriques’ car trunk. They then drove to a remote area of the Cleveland National Forest and discarded the body by rolling it down a hill.
In February 1991, two forest hikers discovered Cacho’s body. Crime scene investigators removed her partially-decomposed and gagged body from the slope where she was discarded. The victim was identified through fingerprints in April 1991. Davidson was convicted of being an accessory after the fact and testified in Henriques’ trial.
Failure to Accept Responsibility and Lack of Remorse
In February 1993, Henriques was convicted by a jury of first degree murder, but a judge reduced the conviction to second degree murder and sentenced Henriques to 15 years to life in state prison. If the inmate had been sentenced to 25 years to life in state prison based on the jury’s first degree murder conviction, he would not yet be eligible for parole. With the reduction in his conviction to second degree murder, the inmate has already received the benefit of the justice system despite showing no remorse or taking responsibility for his crimes.
At the time of the crime the inmate lied to investigators about his relationship with Cacho and told police that she had moved out in December 1990. He continues to claim that Cacho’s death was an accident and that she died after falling and hitting her head on a door, contrary to evidence presented during trial including Davidson’s testimony that Henriques admitted to murdering the victim, and the autopsy report proving that she was strangled. Henriques’ failure to take responsibility for his crime, lack of remorse, and continuous denial of his guilt demonstrates that he still poses a threat to public safety and the community.