- Associated Press - Friday, April 10, 2015

HOUSTON (AP) - A 32-year-old man on death row for the fatal shooting of an 18-year-old Southwest Texas woman whose remains weren’t found until two years after she vanished has lost a federal court appeal.

The decision Friday from the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals moves Ramiro Gonzales a step closer to execution for the slaying of Bridget Townsend. She’d been reported missing from her Bandera County home in January 2001.

Gonzales’ lawyers unsuccessfully argued he had deficient legal help at his 2006 trial and that a prosecution witness improperly testified.

Gonzales was headed to prison with two life terms for the abduction and rape of a woman in Bandera County when he told authorities he knew where they could find Townsend’s remains at his family’s ranch in adjacent Medina County.

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