News Flash

New Braunfels Police Department

Posted on: December 23, 2019

Two Suspects Charged with Capital Murder in 2015 Homicide Case

Joseph Austin Jr. booking photo

Two suspects have been charged with Capital Murder in the 2015 murder of 23-year old Samantha Miranda.  On May 21st, 2015, at approximately 12:45am, the New Braunfels Police Department responded to a call for shots fired in the 900 block of I-35 South.  Officers arrived to find the deceased victim laying on the sidewalk along the southbound I-35 frontage road after suffering multiple gunshot wounds.

Over the last 4½ years, Detectives with the New Braunfels Police Department have tirelessly pursued leads in this case in an attempt to identify those responsible.  That exhaustive investigation has included hundreds of hours of interviews, extensive forensic investigation, and numerous search warrants and subpoenas.

On December 3rd, 2019, NBPD Detectives traveled to Jefferson Parish, Louisiana, to interview two potential suspects in this case.  Based on the statements made by the suspects during those interviews, combined with evidence already obtained throughout the course of the 4½-year long investigation, Detectives were able to obtain arrest warrants for each of those suspects.

23-year old Joseph “Joey” Austin Jr. of Avondale, Louisiana, and 41-year old De Hieu Nguyen of Harvey, Louisiana, were each served arrest warrants charging them with Capital Murder.  The warrants charge that the victim was shot and killed during the commission of a robbery.  It is believed that Joseph Austin Jr. (see photo) was the actual shooter while De Nguyen was the getaway driver during the robbery/homicide.  At the time the arrest warrants were served, both suspects were already incarcerated in the Jefferson Parish Jail on unrelated charges.  Bond for each suspect has been set at $750,000.  Joseph Austin Jr. has already been extradited and is currently housed at the Comal County Jail.  De Nguyen is still awaiting extradition back to Comal County. 

Over the course of this investigation a number of agencies provided assistance and the New Braunfels Police Department would like to acknowledge the help of the Comal County Sheriff’s Office, the San Antonio Police Department, the Comal County Metro Narcotics Task Force, the Texas Rangers, the U.S. Marshals Lone Star Fugitive Task Force, the F.B.I., and the Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office.

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