911 dispatchers in Fort Worth, Texas, faced an alarming situation when a frantic husband dialed in, stating that his wife had shot herself. The emergency team was promptly dispatched to the residence. There, they discovered Bonnie Horinek lifeless, with a gunshot wound to her chest. The Investigation Discovery series, “Reasonable Doubt: The Meanest Drunk In The South,” delves into this harrowing incident, scrutinizing the subsequent police investigation and ensuing trial. But many still question the final verdict. So, where does the convicted stand today?
**The Ill-fated Evening of Bonnie Horinek**
Bonnie, a respected resident of Fort Worth, had been married to Warren Horinek for three years. Their union, although having its highs and lows, was recognized by the community. Bonnie’s professional life was equally notable, working as a labor and employment lawyer and steadily rising in her field.
Their lives took a dark turn on March 14, 1995. After enjoying an evening out together, tests would later reveal high alcohol levels in both their systems. It was late in the evening, at 11:39 pm, when Warren made the desperate call to 911, initially incoherent but eventually detailing his wife’s alleged self-inflicted gunshot wound to the neck. This claim was juxtaposed with Bonnie’s actual wound location—her chest—and the presence of two guns and a pillowcase around her neck at the scene.
Upon their arrival, first responders found Warren attempting CPR on his already deceased wife. Despite his apparent distress, his bloody attire and inconsistent accounts of the night’s events raised eyebrows.
**Doubts and Suspicions**
From the outset, investigators eyed Warren, who was previously in law enforcement. Ironically, his drinking issues had led to his dismissal. While he initially told dispatchers that his wife had harmed herself, he later conveyed a narrative of a home intruder to on-scene officers, a discrepancy that didn’t go unnoticed.
Although initial conclusions leaned towards suicide, those close to Bonnie strongly refuted the notion, citing her life principles. Officers also remembered Warren’s intoxicated state that evening, paired with his unsettling habit of brandishing firearms under the influence.
The ambiguity deepened when forensic analysis of Warren’s bloody shirt indicated he was in close proximity when the shot was fired, yet failed to definitively label the incident as a suicide or homicide. This ambiguity prompted Bonnie’s grieving parents to take matters into their hands. With the aid of a legal team, they presented their findings to a grand jury. Their efforts bore fruit in March 1996 when Warren was arrested and charged.
The subsequent trial was unconventional, heavily driven by private lawyers backed by privately-hired specialists. Despite Warren’s insistence on his innocence, the forensic evidence, particularly the blood spatter patterns, proved pivotal. The jury convicted him of the heinous crime.
Warren was sentenced to a 30-year prison term in 1996. An appeal in 1998 to reconsider his conviction was unsuccessful. Currently, he’s incarcerated at the Clarence N. Stevenson Unit in Cuero, DeWitt County, Texas. If all goes as per the stipulated time frame, Warren will see the outside world in 2026.
Victim: Bonnie Horinek (shot 1995)
Perpetrator: Her husband, Warren Horinek (found guilty & sentenced in 1996)
Other Resources: When Blood Spatter is More Closely Examined