David Garcia-Mendoza, 22, has been sentenced to life plus five years in prison for the murder of a Chamblee tax driver. According to prosecutors, Garcia-Mendoza pleaded guilty to charges of Felony Murder, Kidnapping, Aggravated Assault, Theft of Services and weapons offenses in connection with the shooting death of 43-year-old Luz Mariana Matheu.
According to a press release from the office of DeKalb County District Attorney Sherry Boston: Matheu was gunned down on October 1, 2016 shortly after picking the Defendant up from a Buford Highway hotel. Witnesses reported seeing the two arguing in the front seat of the victim’s car while parked at a nearby gas station. The Defendant then held a gun to the victim’s head before forcing her to drive away. He pulled the trigger a short distance later, causing the victim to lose control of the vehicle and crash into a fence at the intersection of Warwick Circle and Woodacres Road in Chamblee. The victim suffered a fatal gunshot wound the head. The Defendant fled the scene into a residential area and forced two men to the ground at gunpoint before escaping into a wooded area. Garcia-Mendoza was arrested after being tracked by a canine unit while hiding in a kudzu patch. During a police interrogation, the Defendant admitted being under the influence of drugs and alcohol and shooting the victim because she would not accept drugs as payment for his taxi ride.