Eric Garcia, from Austin, Texas, tried to protect his daughter from her boyfriend and ended up losing his life. The man passed away on Thursday, after being on an induced coma for five days.
The Garcia family is mourning the death of their father, while his murderer stays behind bars at the Travis County Jail.
On March 23, Eric Garcia tried to intervene in a fight between his daughter and her boyfriend, Jamie Apodaca, 24, who was calling her derogatory names and accusing her of cheating.
Garcia asked Apodaca — who had been living with the Garcias at their Austin home for ten days — to leave the house, and according to witnesses, Apodaca complied, but returned minutes later to confront Garcia.
Their argument escalated to physical violence, with Apodaca allegedly throwing the first punch at Eric, and then at the daughter when she tried to stop the fight. Apodaca reportedly struck the woman that one of her teeth was knocked out of her mouth.
The fight continued down a flight of stairs and out of the house, and by then, Garcia had been knocked to the ground several times.
On the street, Apodaca punched Garcia so hard that he fell again, and his head hit the concrete, causing major brain swelling and injury, according to what Rock Schouman, Garcia’s friend, said on a Facebook campaign page.
Paramedics arrived at the place and found Garcia unconscious. “His heart quit beating on the driveway, and it took over 15 minutes with the paramedics to get his heartbeat back,” Schouman explained.
Jamie Apodaca mugshot. | Source: Travis County Jail
Garcia was taken to the hospital and admitted on the intensive care units with a skull fracture, an inter-cranial trauma, and a herniated brain, according to KXAN. He was attached to a breathing machine and put in an induced coma.
“He tried to split up a fight. He was such a quiet, nice, humble person, you know. He didn't really deserve what happened to him," Rock Schouman said. And added:
"It's not looking good right now. Current diagnosis — there's not really a lot of brain function happening. He was dead for 15 minutes before the paramedics could actually bring him back."
Eric García died after tried to defend his daughter. | Source: GoFundMe/eric-garcia-and-his-family-need-our-help
Schouman announced that Garcia died on Thursday evening, surrounded by his loved ones.
The man set up a GoFundMe and a Facebook donation page to raise money and “help with his family's expenses, rent, food, and anything else they need so that they can get through this trying time without losing their home.”
Megan Garcia, Eric's partner and the mother of his daughters also took to Facebook to share the sad news:
Jamie Apodaca is facing charges for aggravated assault with serious bodily injury, assault causing bodily injury, assault causing bodily injury to a family member, and evading arrest/detention.
He’s currently at the Travis County Jail and held on a $165,000 bond.
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