Federal Grand Jury returns with additional charges against Walmart shooter

Paulina Astrid Spencer, Entertainment Editor

Today, a federal grand jury in El Paso returned with additional charges against the Cielo Vista Walmart shooter, Patrick Wood Crusius, 21, to include new charges related to the death of a 23rd  victim. 

According to a media release by the Department of Justice (DOJ)the superseding indictment includes a new hate crime and firearm charge after Guillermo Garcia, 36, who had been shot on Aug. 3, 2019, died April 25 because of the injuries he sustained. 

The superseding indictment alleges that in June 2019, Crusius used the internet to purchase a semi-automatic rifle and 1,000 rounds of ammunition. On Aug. 3, after considerable planning and premeditation, Crusius took the assault rifle and ammunition and drove from his residence in Allen, TX, to the Walmart Supercenter store located on Gateway West Blvd. where he conducted his attack, leaving 23 people dead and several injured. 

The updated indictment includes 23 counts of hate crimes resulting in death (counts 1-23), 23 counts of use of a firearm to commit murder during and in relation to a crime of violence (counts 24- 46), 22 counts of hate crimes involving an attempt to kill (counts 47-68), and 22 counts of use of a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence (counts 69-90), said the release. 

According to the DOJthe charges in the superseding indictment carry a maximum penalty of death or life imprisonment, with the attorney general deciding whether to seek the death penalty later. 

The case has been assigned to U.S. District Judge David C. Guaderrama, with no trial date at this time. This case is scheduled for a docket call at 2:00pm on October 7, 2020, said the release. 

Paulina Astrid Spencer may be reached at [email protected]