SANTA MONICA—Jason Levi Garza, 44, of Santa Monica was sentenced to 33 years in state prison on Thursday, June 28, after carjacking a man who was waiting in his car and holding him hostage at gunpoint.
According to a press release from the Los Angeles District Attorney’s Office, on October 3, 2016, the victim was waiting in his car for his wife in front of the Public Health Building on the UCLA campus when the incident transpired. Garza pointed a gun at the victim and made him drive for six hours before forcing him inside the trunk of the vehicle and leaving him in a deserted location in Castaic.
The victim was able to receive help when he walked for about 90 minutes to a freeway call box. Authorities tracked down and arrested Garza on October 13, 2016.
On March 21, 2018, the suspect was charged with one count of carjacking. He pleaded no contest to the charge and confessed to using a handgun as a deadly weapon. Garza was charged for second degree robbery back in 2011, the Santa Monica Daily Press reported. The defendant faced up to life in prison if found guilty as charged.