Fort Worth

Teen accused in Fort Worth home invasion slaying

Nancy Mata, 17, was killed on January 12 and her boyfriend was critically wounded at their home on Bee Tree Lane in Fort Worth.
Nancy Mata, 17, was killed on January 12 and her boyfriend was critically wounded at their home on Bee Tree Lane in Fort Worth.

A teenager on probation for aggravated robbery is a suspect in the killing of another teen last week during a home invasion robbery that was possibly drug-related, police said Sunday.

Jail records identified the suspect as Daquarias Dennis, 18, of Fort Worth, who was arrested Friday.

Dennis is accused of killing Nancy Mata on the night of Jan. 12 at a home in south Fort Worth. Her boyfriend, Ricardo Casteneda Jr., 24, was shot multiple times and remained hospitalized on Friday. His condition was not available Sunday.

Mata was pronounced dead the night of Jan. 12 at a home in the 3700 block of Bee Tree Lane. She died of a gunshot wound to the face.

Dennis is in the Mansfield jail with bond set at $1 million.

He had been placed on 10 years of probation Jan. 8 for aggravated robbery and burglary of a habitation, crimes that occurred in Fort Worth on Nov. 1, 2015, according to Tarrant County criminal court records. He was on probation with deferred adjudication, according to court records.

Homicide Sgt. Joe Loughman has said that investigators “believe that this was a drug-related home invasion robbery.”

Neighbors told police they saw a car with two people — another witness said four — pull up to the house about 9:30 p.m., according to Officer Daniel Segura, a police spokesman.

“One of the neighbors said he heard yelling and screaming,” Segura said.

Shortly afterward, neighbors heard multiple gunshots, he said.

Loughman said it appears that most of the shooting occurred inside the house. He said Casteneda ran from the residence and got help from neighbors.

The house, where police say Castenada and Mata appear to have been living, was the scene of a narcotics investigation in May.

Court records show Casteneda was arrested as a result of that investigation and charged with possession of marijuana between 4 ounces and five pounds and delivery/manufacturing of a controlled substance (cocaine.)

A Tarrant County grand jury declined to indict Casteneda in July on the marijuana charge but returned a true bill in connection with the cocaine charge, court records show.

As part of a plea bargain, Casteneda pleaded guilty in October to possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance and was sentenced to seven years’ deferred adjudication probation, court records show.

Mata was a student at Paschal High School from 2012 to October 2014, a Fort Worth school district spokesman said.

Her death marked the first homicide of 2016 in Fort Worth. There were 61 homicides in the city last year, up from 51 in 2014.

This report contains information from Star-Telegram archives.

Domingo Ramirez Jr.: 817-390-7763, @mingoramirezjr

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