A white gunman who carried out a racist attack at an El Paso Walmart, killing 23 people, has been sentenced to 90 consecutive life sentences. Patrick Crusius, 24, pleaded guilty to 90 federal charges earlier this year in connection with the mass shooting that happened in August of 2019.
The sentencing hearing, which lasted three days, concluded with Senior U.S. District Judge David C. Guaderrama handing down the maximum punishment. While Crusius could still face the death penalty, the life sentences mean he will spend the rest of his life behind bars.
Patrick Crusius, the gunman responsible for the deadly mass shooting at an El Paso Walmart, has been sentenced to 90 consecutive life sentences. The 24-year-old pleaded guilty to 90 federal charges earlier this year, admitting his involvement in the attack . The sentencing, which took place at the Albert Armendariz Sr. Federal Courthouse, was presided over by Senior U.S. District Judge David C. Guaderrama. The decision means that Crusius will spend the remainder of his life in federal prison.
Crusius drove 700 miles from Allen, Texas, to El Paso on the morning of the attack, armed with a semiautomatic rifle. He targeted innocent people in the Walmart parking lot before moving inside the store, where he continued his shooting spree. The death toll rose to 23 in the days following the attack. Crusius was apprehended shortly after the shooting and confessed to law enforcement that he specifically targeted Hispanic people. He claimed his motive was to deter Mexicans and other Hispanics from coming to the United States. Prior to the attack, he had posted a racist manifesto online, outlining his hatred for Hispanic people.
While the federal case against Crusius has come to a close, the legal battle is far from over. El Paso County District Attorney Bill Hicks has stated that his office is seeking the death penalty in the state’s case against the gunman. Crusius faces one count of capital murder of multiple persons, as well as 22 counts of aggravated assault using a deadly weapon in the state trial. The outcome of the federal case will not impact the state’s pursuit of the death penalty. A trial date has yet to be set, but it is expected to take place in the coming years.
The sentencing of Patrick Crusius to 90 consecutive life sentences marks the end of the federal criminal case against him. While the federal case has reached its conclusion, the state trial awaits, with the possibility of the death penalty still on the table.