San Angelo Man Sentenced for Role in Violent Grape Creek Shooting & Robbery


SAN ANGELO- A San Angelo man has taken a plea deal for his role in a series of armed robberies in Grape Creek earlier this year.

According to court documents, on January 28, 2022, Tom Green County Sheriff Deputies responded to the 8900 block of Ballard Road for a report of “shots fired”. Once on scene, deputies made contact with the victim who stated that a friend told her a subject was burglarizing her vehicle.

The victim exited her residence and went to confront the subjects stealing from her. When she left her house, the subjects fled but she pursued. The suspects turned towards her and fired a handgun in her direction. Deputies later found 11 spent shell casings and the victim discovered that items had been stolen out of her vehicle.

One of the stolen items from the victim was tracked to a store and the individual who sold the item was identified as Tony Enrique Rios.

On January 29, 2022, Rios, along with two other subjects, were stopped by the San Angelo Police Department where officers seized a black 9mm handgun.

On February 2, 2022, Rios was interviewed by investigators and said he, along with Benita Iniguez, Joe Ortiz, and two other subjects went to Grape Creek to burglarize vehicles. It should be noted that the Tom Green County Sheriff’s Office took multiple calls for reported thefts in the Grape Creek area all from the same night.

Rios said it was his idea to go to Grape Creek and he provided addresses where they could commit the thefts. Rios said one of the unnamed subjects and Ortiz broke into most of the vehicles and Iniguez drove them around in a blue Jeep.

When breaking into a vehicle on Ballard Road, Rios said Ortiz “dropped the whole rack” or fired every round inside the firearm, when a woman approached them. None of the rounds struck the woman.  Rios said Oritz admitted to shooting the gun. He also told the investigator that Ortiz had the gun on his person and brought the gun with him when they went to Grape Creek.

In exchanger for a guilty plea, Rios will spend the next 10 years in prison. Also, when Rios was arrested, he was in possession of less than one gram of methamphetamine. That charge was dismissed as part of his plea deal.

On Wednesday, Benita Blanca Iniguez was sentenced to 10 years deferred for her role in this incident.

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