PRESS Staff Report
Authorities confirmed that the body retrieved from the waters near the area known as the Fingers was that of Port Isabel-based attorney Ray Roman Marchan. The discovery was made shortly after 5 p.m. after a nearly 12-hour search by local authorities, which included the Coast Guard and Texas Parks & Wildlife.
According to reports, Marchan reportedly jumped off the Queen Isabella Memorial Causeway early Thursday morning.
Cameron County Sheriff’s Department responded to a 9-1-1 call reporting that a person jumped from the top of the causeway shortly after 4 a.m. Lt. Tyrone Connors, a representative for the U.S. Coast Guard said the sheriff’s office requested the Coast Guard’s assistance in locating a male subject between the ages of 40 and 50 years old.
Connors said the Coast Guard was called at 4:13 a.m., adding that a boat as well as an M8 Dolphin helicopter assisted the Sheriff’s office in recovering the body.
Authorities said that Marchan took a taxi cab from a Brownsville residence to the highest point of the causeway, at which point he reportedly told the driver that he was feeling ill and asked the driver to pull the car over towards the bridge’s median.
It was at that point that Marchan allegedly exited the vehicle and jumped into the Laguna Madre.
The U.S. Coast Guard immediately launched their search for the body.
Marchan plead guilty in 2012 to a federal racketeering case linked to former State Judge Able Limas who admitted to taking bribes for favorable rulings in his courtroom.
Marchan was convicted in June for paying Limas over $11,000 in bribes and kickbacks in 2008. Limas plead guilty to his part last year and was the key witness against Marchan. Marchan was due to turn himself into authorities today to start serving his three and a half year sentence.
As of press time, it is believe that Marchan left a suicide note at the Brownsville residence. According to a source close to the case, investigators are keeping all possibilities with regards to the circumstances surrounding the matter open.