Three convicted of Hoover murder sentenced to 25, 30, and 40 years in prison

PRESS RELEASE– Last week, the Medina County Criminal District Attorney’s Office secured convictions and sentences for three defendants who participated in the murder of 20-year-old Noah Hoover that occurred in the Devine area in October 2019. All three defendants pled “No Contest” to the charges and their sentences were assessed by Judge Daniel J. Kindred. On January 31, 2022 Julian Rae Maldonado was sentenced to 25 years in prison for murder and his brother, Vincente Eulalio Maldonado, Jr., was sentenced to 30 years in prison for murder. In a continuation of the proceedings on February 4, 2022, Nathan Gruensteiner was sentenced to 30 years in prison for murder and 10 years in prison for aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.
The testimony and evidence produced at trial showed that Gruensteiner recruited the Maldonado brothers to help him settle an ongoing dispute with Hoover. A witness at the scene said Hoover and others had been led to believe Greunsteiner was going to drop by to settle the dispute peacefully, but when he arrived, the three defendants produced weapons and began shooting. At least thirteen 9mm rounds were fired, with two rounds hitting the deceased Hoover and two rounds hitting his cousin Jesse Hoover, who survived. There were three other people in the line of fire that day, including two children.
Gruensteiner was identified by witnesses at the scene and was apprehended in Williamson County several hours after the shooting and after wrecking his vehicle following a high speed chase. Gruensteiner quickly implicated the Maldonado brothers in the shooting, and Medina County Sheriff Deputies were able to locate the pair in a hotel room in San Antonio within days of the shooting. The Maldonado brothers were in possession of a firearm, narcotics and drug paraphernalia at the time of their arrest.
District Attorney Mark Haby credits the professionalism of the Medina County Sheriff’s Office, and the Texas Rangers for the swift apprehension of the defendants and the accumulation of insurmountable evidence against all three individuals. Haby also credits prosecutors Scott Simpson and Jeff Diles, along with DA Investigator Todd Heilig and the rest of the DA staff for securing the defendants’ pleas and diligently preparing for the punishment trial which resulted in the sentences.
If you re-call, this drive by shooting occurred just a few miles outside of Devine on CR 668, which intersects with CR 5710. County Road 668 is off to the right, near where CR 5710 turns into a dirt road. The shooting happened near, but not inside a nearby mobile home park.
In an interview back in 2019, Sheriff Randy Brown stated, “The vehicle stopped in front of the home and fired and then kept on shooting as they drove off. Thank God no one else was shot due to the reckless actions” that day.

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