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Ashley Garcia Gets Two Years Under Plea Deal

on December 14, 2017 - 7:19am

Ashley Garcia awaits her sentencing hearing Wednesday morning in Los Alamos District Court. Photo by Maire O'Neill/


Los Alamos Daily Post

A Hernandez woman involved in a March 9 shoplifting incident, which ended with a local man being struck by a vehicle outside Bealls Department Store in the Mari-Mac Shopping Center, was sentenced to two years in the Womens Correctional Facility Wednesday by First Judicial District Judge T. Glenn Ellington. Ashley Garcia, 23, will be on supervised probation for four years following her incarceration.

Garcia had entered into a global plea agreement for charges in Los Alamos, Santa Fe and Rio Arriba Counties of aggravated battery with a deadly weapon, forgery and two counts of shoplifting of more than $500. She was ordered to undergo a 60-day diagnostic evaluation at the Department of Prisons prior to sentencing.

Under a plea agreement reached by Deputy District Attorney Kent Wahlquist, Garcia was sentenced to six years but only faced zero to two years in prison. Under the terms of the agreement, Garcia would pay restitution of $1,100 to the victim in the Rio Arriba County case, $1,028 to Bealls Department Store and a yet to be determined amount to the man struck by her car in the Los Alamos case. In return for her admission to a 2012 residential burglary charge in Rio Arriba County, Wahlquist agreed not to apply the additional time for a habitual criminal.

Wahlquist reviewed Garcia’s prior offenses Wednesday in court. He recounted a 2016 felony shoplifting incident in Los Alamos where Garcia took an empty baby car seat into Smith’s Marketplace, filled it with $400 to $500 of merchandise and was caught by store personnel as she tried to leave. He also spoke of another 2016 case where Garcia forged checks in Rio Arriba County.

He said just a few weeks later, she was caught shoplifting in Santa Fe. An off-duty police officer happened to hear store personnel calling out to her to stop so he ordered her to stop.

“She pulled out a syringe and told the police officer she would (expletive) stab him. The officer had to draw his weapon to get her to comply with his orders,” Wahlquist said.

He also recounted the circumstances surrounding the Bealls shoplifting incident where Garcia and another woman stole more than $1,000 in merchandise and ran out the door. Garcia got into a car and attempted to run down the store manager’s husband with her car sending him flying over the hood of the car where he hit the windshield with his elbow and cracked it. Wahlquist said citizens driving up the Main Hill Road called police because they saw the cracked windshield, that it was so shattered that people driving by didn’t think it looked right.

“It shows that she has a history of being dangerous. She’s escalated. She has on multiple occasions either threatened or actually hurt somebody to effectuate her escape from felony level crime,” Wahlquist told the court. “She’s clearly a danger.”

He told the court that Garcia had had her chance and that she really is a danger to the community because her crimes continue to escalate, culminating in her last case where she ran over a person to escape and that she had “earned” her place in prison for two years.

Upon sentencing Garcia to the maximum amount of time in prison requested under the plea agreement, Judge Ellington told her she had been given “quite a break” with the two-year maximum. He cited her continual pattern of criminal behavior telling her, “You’re dangerous. You strike back”.