Accused Child Molester in Ector County Cuts Off Ankle Monitor, Flees Before Trial

By Jen Kastner
NewsWest 9

ECTOR COUNTY- 37-year-old Jose Salais of Ector County is accused continuous sexual abuse of young children. Within a disturbing and graphic indictment, it's reported that Salais repeatedly assaulted kids under 14-years-old.

He has been waiting for his case to go in front of a jury. In the meantime, he was out on bond with special conditions, including the requirement to wear an electronic monitor around his ankle. However, last week that device was sliced.

Ector County District Attorney Bobby Bland tells NewsWest 9, "We discovered he had cut off his ankle monitor and so we filed a motion to revoke his bond and the judge granted it and issued a warrant for his arrest."

Salais is now on the run. His trial was scheduled to start this week at the Ector County Courthouse, with jury selection taking place on Wednesday.

However the DA's office tells us that since Salais has absconded, the trial will be put on hold.

"We'll do everything we can to get him back into custody," Bland said.

Now, the U.S. Marshals Service, an agency that looks for fugitives, will assist in the pursuit of finding the fugitive.

The DA tells NewsWest 9 that ankle monitors are usually very effective. Rarely are they tampered with.

"I know of no [previous] case where someone was able to cut off these ankle monitors," Bland said.

Jimmy Ruiz runs the Ector County Post-Sentence Monitoring program. He helps outfit people with monitoring devices. Ruiz says most people abide by the rules of the program.

"They don't want to deal with the consequences of not complying," Ruiz said.

Ruiz explains how the devices work. "They have fiber optic wires inside of them that notify us when they're cut or attempted to be cut."

"I can't speak to what kind of immediate threat he is. He is charged with a very serious crime of continuous sexual abuse of a child," Bland said.

Despite the DA's frustration with the situation, they have no intention of giving up.

"Justice may be delayed in this case but it won't be denied, hopefully," Bland said.