Prosecutors will seek an aggravated sentence because he's currently on probation for another similar incident involving the same victim.
A Crookston man has been charged with second-degree intentional attempted murder of his girlfriend after she reportedly told police her boyfriend choked her until she passed out multiple times and told her he was going to kill her. Jesse Jay Garcia Jr., 36, also faces charges of third-degree assault, domestic assault by strangulation and threats of violence. If convicted of all four charges, he could face 53 years in prison, $25,000 in fines, or both.
The prosecution noted in the court complaint that it intends to seek an aggravated sentence if the defendant pleads guilty without a plea agreement or is convicted after a trial because the victim was particularly vulnerable due to the presence of her child and the current offense is an offense in which the victim otherwise was injured and the defendant has a prior felony conviction for an offense in which the victim otherwise was injured, and/or an aggravated dispositional departure is justified because the defendant is particularly unamenable to probation due to committing a nearly identical felony offense to the felony offense in which he is currently on supervised probation for in Polk County.
According to court documents, on March 8, 2020, Crookston police officers were dispatched to the 700 block of Woodland Avenue on a report of a domestic disturbance. Upon arrival, an officer spoke to M.V. who stated that her boyfriend, Garcia Jr., who she lives with and they have a son together, got into an argument at around 6 a.m. over money that went missing from the house and she did not know where it was. M.V. stated that she was in her bedroom laying on the bed when Garcia Jr. came into the bedroom, grabbed her by the shirt, pulled her off the bed and threw her onto the floor. Garcia Jr. then allegedly choked her on the floor for what M.V. described as “like a couple hours.”
Garcia Jr. then allegedly told M.V. he was going to kill her because “he did not want to go to jail unless he is going to kill her,” said the complaint.
M.V. said Garcia Jr. had his knees on her arms, holding her down, and was choking her with both of his hands around her neck, and her breathing was restricted to the point where she passed out. When she awoke, Garcia Jr., she told police, was still on top of her and choked her a second time until she passed out. M.V. also stated that Garcia Jr. punched her in the face a couple of times with a closed fist. She added that she scratched Garcia Jr. in the face to get him off of her and that her son was in the bedroom when the incident was going on.
M.V. told police she was scared because she thought she was going to die and that Garcia Jr. told her he was going to kill her “a lot of times.” She also mentioned that Garcia Jr. took her phone and hid it. Then, she told Garcia Jr. that she would not tell anyone what happened and Garcia Jr. allegedly passed out. Since Garcia Jr. was asleep, M.V. told police she took Garcia Jr.’s phone and called her brother. She also said she did not want to wake Garcia Jr. up because she thought he was going to kill her.
M.V., who was crying during her entire conversation, told the officer Garcia Jr. was inside the residence in the bedroom sleeping and that Garcia Jr. had been drinking and drank approximately a 12-pack of beer with her. The officer then photographed M.V.’s injuries which included multiple bruises, scratches and red marks including on her neck.
Officers then entered the resident on Woodland Avenue, located Garcia Jr. and placed him under arrest. One officer observed scratches on Garcia Jr.’s face, some of which still had blood on them. The officers also learned that the couple’s son is less than one years old.
A review of of Garcia Jr.’s previous convictions included domestic assault by strangulation on or about September 17, 2019 for which he was still on supervised probation for, felony failure to appear at the same time, possession of a controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia on our about June 25, 2019 for which there was currently a warrant outstanding for his arrest, driving while under the influence, multiple counts of driving while impaired, contempt of court, first-degree criminal damage to property, bail jumping, and possession of marijuana in a motor vehicle.