Man Plead to Manslaughter, Sentenced to 30 Years

A man received a 30-year sentence in Laurens County General Sessions Court yesterday from a July, 2018 fatal shooting. 35-year-old Anthony Cruz Garcia of Tullyton Drive, Fountain Inn, was scheduled to stand trial for Murder and Possession of a Weapon during a Violent Crime from the fatal shooting of his girlfriend, 24-year-old Faith Elizabeth Garza.

Before the trail got underway Monday afternoon, Presiding Judge Don Hocker announced that Garcia’s attorney, Bill Mayer of Laurens, told him that his client had agreed to plead guilty to a lesser charge of Involuntary Manslaughter, with the dismissal of the Weapons Possession charge.

Warren Mowry, a prosecutor from the 8th Circuit Solicitor’s Office, told the judge that there was a solid case against Garcia, and he recommended that the maximum 30 years be given for Involuntary Manslaughter. Mowry recounted details of the incident back in July 2018, when the couple were living in a camper on family property. They had only been there a week, after moving to South Carolina from San Antonio, Texas. Mowry said, “Witnesses told police that there was a screaming and cursing exchange just before the shooting, and Garcia then fled the scene, but was captured later in a store parking lot.”

The victim’s mother and stepfather provided a written statement on the impact that their daughter’s death had on their lives, noting that the defendant going to prison will not help their grief, but it will prevent him from hurting anyone else.

Garcia was sentenced to 30 years in prison, with credit for 518 days already served.

As the jury was dismissed, Judge Hocker told them to report back tomorrow morning, as another trial may be scheduled.