Murder suspect Anthony Vasquez has 12 felony convictions in 4 years

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Posted: Wednesday, September 18, 2013 5:55 pm

EPHRATA – Anthony R. Vasquez has a six-year-long criminal history, before he allegedly shot and killed Juan J. Garcia Tuesday evening.

His last conviction was in 2011 and he was sentenced to four years in prison.

Two years later, he is wanted as a suspect in the murder of Juan Jesus Garcia, a 22-year-old Moses Lake man, at the Airport Grocery Mart on Patton Boulevard.

The Washington State Department of Corrections declined to provide the reason for the shortened sentence.

Moses Lake police described the 23-year-old Moses Lake gang member as a threat to officer safety, stating in 2009, he'd been questioned in one homicide and participated in several violent gang offences, including one where he was shot.

Vasquez's first encounter with the court system came in 2007 when he was convicted as a juvenile for being in possession of marijuana with intent to manufacture, according to court records.

He appeared in adult court again roughly a year later when he reportedly tried fleeing from a Grant County sheriff's deputy in November 2008. The chase went through the residential neighborhood of Larson, before he was caught. He was sentenced to 30 days in jail.

Within the next year Moses Lake police and the Grant County Sheriff's Office had four run-ins with Vasquez and fellow gang members, according to court records. The incidents started in January when Vasquez fled from a Moses Lake police officer while he was driving a stolen car. He later pleaded guilty to taking a motor vehicle without permission and was sentenced to three months in jail.

Three months later, Vasquez ran a red light at the intersection of Nelson Road and state Route 17, leading police on another chase through Moses Lake. He pleaded guilty to attempting to elude a pursuing police officer and was sentenced to three months in jail on the same day he was sentenced for the January crime.

A month after getting sentenced for the two previous crimes, he was stopped by Moses Lake police for not wearing his seat belt, and officers found marijuana and a fake $100 bill on Vasquez. He was convicted of forgery.

The Grant County Sheriff's Office stopped Vasquez after he ran a red light two months later, and found fenanyl, morphine, oxycodone, marijuana and a methamphetamine pipe in the car. He was convicted of possession of the drugs and sentenced to six months in jail.

His most recent crimes happened in 2010, the first in March when he ran from Moses Lake police and the U.S. Marshals Service when they were looking for a different person. After leading police on another chase through Moses Lake, he tossed a gun under an SUV in a parking lot.

Five months later, he was caught changing lanes without signaling. When he was stopped, police found a gun under the seat and a methamphetamine pipe in his pocket. He pleaded guilty to two counts of unlawful possession of a firearm in the second degree, possession of stolen property in the second degree and attempted possession with the intent to deliver methamphetamine between the two cases. He was sentenced to four years in prison in January 2011.

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  • Blafountain posted at 2:56 am on Sun, Sep 29, 2013.

    Blafountain Posts: 2

    I agree with you plaza 100%. Be the change you would like to see, get out there and vote people!!!!

  • Blafountain posted at 2:54 am on Sun, Sep 29, 2013.

    Blafountain Posts: 2

    I can not beleive that one person in this much trouble could continue to be such a threat to our community... AND they kept letting him have another chance. BUT now that the M word is involved maybe they will keep this gang member behind bars.

  • plaza posted at 12:25 pm on Fri, Sep 27, 2013.

    plaza Posts: 31

    So here is an indication of how Grant County Judges protect the community. I think the Prosecuting Attorney worked to get this man off the streets but as seems to be more and more common the Judges put the criminal back on the street.

    I suggest we all remember this as an example of the Judges actions in Grant County and so if you want change then when the next election comes around get rid of the problem!!

    In other words ... "It's time to fire some Judges" [thumbdown]

  • scottmac posted at 9:34 am on Thu, Sep 19, 2013.

    scottmac Posts: 68

    I think I have figured out the problem here.. the police are drastically underfunded, leaving them with not enough bullets.. this POS should have been wasted long ago, like when he was born. All those felony convictions and they can't do better than a one month, two month, four year sentence, which he never served the full time.... pathetic, absolutely pathetic.. and our judges need to start dealing with these people instead of hoping a short sentence will deter them from further crimes... come on judges, lets start working for those who voted you into office... you could be just as easily voted out if you don't start doing your job...

  • tuff guy posted at 10:09 pm on Wed, Sep 18, 2013.

    tuff guy Posts: 1

    Waste of life.

  • axejunkie posted at 8:03 pm on Wed, Sep 18, 2013.

    axejunkie Posts: 5

    [ohmy] not hung from a tree yet such a shame



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