An elderly painter who mowed down his girlfriend with a pick-up truck in Houston will now be spending years behind bars.
Rogelio Alberto Guardado, 72, was sentenced to two decades in prison, prosecutors said on Monday, September 16. He had pled guilty to aggravated assault causing serious bodily harm in the 2016 road rage encounter that put his girlfriend in a wheelchair for two years.
On Sept. 11, 2016, the man’s 41-year-old girlfriend discovered Guardado slashing the tires of her car outside her apartment building in Houston. Witnesses then saw Guardado retreat to his Nissan Frontier pick-up truck. As she tried to run away, Guardado put his truck in drive and accelerated, hitting the woman “multiple times,” according to charging documents obtained by Oxygen.com.
Police say that after Guardado struck the woman once, he put his truck in reverse and drove over her three more times, before fleeing the scene.
Authorities said several people darted into the parking lot to the woman’s aid in an attempt to stop Guardado.
The woman, who wasn’t identified by police, survived the road rage attack — and spent two years confined to a wheelchair. She reportedly suffered a shattered pelvis, two broken legs, broken ribs, and head trauma. She also sustained “life-threatening” internal injuries and spent two months in the hospital following the attack.
“He tried to kill her and she wouldn’t die,” Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg said in a press release.
“Domestic violence fuels our murder rate,” he added. “We are lucky she was strong enough to survive this horror.”
The woman, who testified against Guardado during his trial, attended court using a walker.
“She was incredibly brave,” Assistant District Attorney Nicci Campbell said, describing the carnage that Guardado inflicted.
“She told about how this was someone she loved, someone she trusted and how bad things got after they broke up. She told about hearing her bones being crushed under the tires and seeing her own blood on the ground. Her body was essentially severed in half.”
Houston police arrested Guardado days later after matching his truck to descriptions witnesses had provided. Before Guardado struck a plea deal, prosecutors were seeking life in prison for the attack.
Guardado, who police say worked as a painter in Harris County, isn’t eligible for parole until he serves at least 10 years. He could be in his 80s by the time he’s released.
A spokesperson from the Harris County District Attorney's Office declined to comment on the sentence.
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