Man Who Shot and Killed Sheriff's Son Sentenced to Prison


SAN ANGELO, TX –– Just a year after 19-year-old Arturo Garcia Jr. was arrested for fatally shooting John Samuel Dagen, he entered a guilty plea on Tuesday afternoon. The victim was the son of McCulloch County Sheriff John Dagen.

During an in-person hearing, Garcia pleaded guilty to murder, a first-degree felony, and assault of public servant, a third-degree felony. In exchange for the guilty plea, Garcia will serve 50 years for the murder charge and 10 years for the assault charges –– with the sentences serving concurrently in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice.

In the hearing defense attorney Thomas Jackson put his client on the stand and asked questions regarding the voluntary nature of his plea. Based on the responses given, Garcia accepted to spend decades in prison after realizing a jury could sentence him to life or be required to serve consecutive sentences.

In addition to the lengthy prison sentence, Garcia will be required to pay $14,682.58 in restitution.

According to the police report, in October of 2020, Garcia and a second individual were walking down an alley near Pecan St. to attend a party after 1 a.m. While walking, Garcia alleges a group of people began yelling "F*** South Side."

Garcia claimed he began shooting his weapon after the first group began shooting at him and the second individual. When his partner was injured in the gunfire, Garcia left him in the backyard of a nearby residence and fled the scene on foot.

When officers arrived at the scene, they found the victim, 19-year-old John Samuel Dagan, lying on his back in the street near the end of the alley of 29th Street. Dagan was rushed to Shannon Medical Center where he would succumb to his injuries.

During an interview with police, Garcia told authorities, "the thing is, I'm not going to lie, I think I hit a girl. I heard her scream like a girl like it was his girlfriend or some sh**." Garcia also admitted to being affiliated with the South Side Gang for at least four years.

Garcia was initially stopped by patrol officers conducting conducting the shooting investigation after his shoes matched footprints found at the scene.

After Judge Brad Goodwin accepted Garcia's guilty plea, the victim's father, Sheriff Dagen, addressed the court via Zoom.

In his impact statement, Sheriff Dagen described adopting his son when he was five and the impact the loss of his son had on his life. According to Dagen, his son was studying at Angelo State University and dreamed of becoming a DPS trooper and serving his community.

"You have taken a large part of my life away from me," said Dagen.

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