A first-degree felony assault charge against a former Harris County sheriff’s deputy was dismissed nearly four years after the deputy was accused of hitting an alleged speeder in the face after chasing him in a personal vehicle.
Sgt. Marco Carrizales, 39, was indicted on a charge of aggravated assault by a public servant after he reportedly hit Ismael Garza Jr. in the face with an “unknown object” after Carrizales saw the victim drive through a stop sign, Carrizales then jumped into his personal truck and pursued him, despite not having lights or sirens.
At the first trail trial the victim testified that he fled from Carrizales because he didn’t know Carrizales was driving a personal truck. Garza thought the deputy was a car jacker. At the end of the pursuit, he stated Carrizales forced him to his knees at gunpoint before hitting him in the face, leaving him with a fractured eye socket.
A civilian facing similar charges most likely would be charged with assault with a deadly weapon, if he was a low income defendant the four years of trial would most likely have been spent in Harris County Jail.
Carrizales arrested Garza and charged him with resisting arrest and evading a police officer. Both of those charges were later dropped. The deputy was suspended without pay for 10 days and ordered to serve a six-month probationary period that prohibited him from working extra-duty jobs
After his indictment, Carrizales was assigned to civilian status and remained working for the sheriff’s office. David Cuevas, president of the Harris County Deputies Organization stated “I think it’s a miscarriage of justice that Sgt. Carrizales had to go through what he went through, and it’s apparent that the DA’s Office had no other choice but to dismiss this case,” Cuevas believes he should be re-instated.