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Laredo Man Gets Massive Sentence for Carjacking and Firearm Offense

LAREDO, Texas – A 34-year-old Laredoan has been ordered to federal prison for a carjacking and for possessing a firearm during a crime of violence which occurred in September 2017, announced U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Patrick and Special Agent in Charge Fred Milanowski of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF). Rodrigo Garza-delaCruz pleaded guilty June 19, 2018.  

Today, U.S. District Judge Marina Garcia Marmolejo ordered Rodrigo Garza-delaCruz to serve a total of 300 months in federal prison – 120 months for the carjacking and another 180 months for the related firearm offense to be served consecutively. The sentence will be immediately followed by five years of supervised release.

“Protecting our community from the most violent offenders is at the core of the ATF mission,” said Milanowski. “Taking criminals off the street who prey on our citizens while using firearms will continue to remain an ATF priority.”

On Sept. 14, 2017, Garza-delaCruz entered a park in Laredo where he shot and killed one individual.

He then carjacked an 81-year-old man while fleeing the scene. He approached the man in his vehicle and threatened to kill him if he did not drive him to Mexico. Garza-delaCruz fled with the vehicle before officers tracked him down to a residence in Laredo.

Garza-delaCruz engaged in a three-hour standoff with SWAT and a hostage negotiations team before he was ultimately apprehended.

He is also facing related charges in Webb County.

Garza-delaCruz will remain in custody pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future.

The ATF and the Laredo Police Department conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorneys April Ayers-Perez and Alfredo DeLaRosa prosecuted the case.

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