‘Habitual, violent offender’ sentenced to 128 years in prison in Weld County


(Photo: Weld District Attorney’s Office)

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GREELEY, Colo. -– A Greeley man was sentenced to 128 years in prison Thursday for being a “habitual, violent offender.”

Leroy Garcia-Cerda, Jr., 31, according to a news release from the Weld District Attorney’s Office, was convicted of two counts of first-degree assault on a peace officer, one count of second-degree assault on a peace officer, three counts of class one drug felony special offender for possessing drugs while carrying a gun, and one count of resisting arrest.

He also pleaded guilty Thursday to three counts of possession of a weapon by a previous offender, one count of violation of a protection order and one count of carrying a concealed weapon.

Garcia-Cerda was arrested in April of 2018 after Evans police officers responded to the report of a drug deal at a hotel. They found Garcia-Cerda with a gun in his waistband, according to the release, and he threatened to shoot officers. He was arrested before anyone was injured.

“If it wasn’t for these veteran police officers and their swift responses, both of them would have been killed that day,” Michael Pirraglia, chief deputy district attorney said, in the release. “The impact that this incident has had on these officers has been dentrimental, both physically and emotionally. I see the goosebumps on them when they go back and review body camera footage from that night.”

According to the release, the judge imposed a 48-year sentence for each count of first-degree assault on a peace officer, and a 32-year sentence for the drug felony charges. The sentencing time was three times what it might have been because he was a habitual offender, according to the release.

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