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A 31-year-old Mercedes man who broke into his ex-girlfriend’s house at 3 a.m. and held a gun to her head while her children were in the house and shot at police has been sentenced to a decade in prison.
David Jacques Lopez reached a plea deal with prosecutors on the eve of his trial and on Tuesday pleaded guilty to burglary of a habitation with the intent to commit another felony, two counts of deadly conduct and a count of unlawful restraint.
Prior to the plea agreement, Lopez had been charged with two counts of attempted capital murder of a police officer but instead pleaded guilty to the deadly conduct counts, court records show.
Prosecutors also moved to dismiss three additional counts of unlawful restraint.
He was sentenced to 10 years on each count and the will serve them out concurrently.
The violent encounter occurred on Dec. 8, 2020, when Mercedes police officers Victor Zavala and Jorge Cuevas responded to a residence in the 600 block of Washington Avenue to investigate a 9-1-1 hang up.
When Zavala arrived, he activated his unit’s lights to get a better view before walking to the side of the residence while Cuevas went and knocked on the front door.
“Officer Zavala heard a female crying inside the residence and heard someone else talking. Officer Cuevas knocked on the front door again at which point Officer Zavala heard gunshots coming from inside the residence and noticed that the gunshot rounds came through the front window where they were standing in front of,” a probable cause affidavit stated.
The officers then took cover and minutes later a third shot was fired from the residence, according to the affidavit.
The fired shots prompted a strong police response and a standoff lasted for about two hours before Lopez walked out of the house’s back door “holding a gun in his right hand close to his face,” as the sheriff’s SWAT team moved in and arrested him.
In a news release, Mercedes police previously said authorities convinced Lopez to drop the weapon.
The probable cause affidavit also described how one of the children texted their biological father and provided live updates to police from inside the residence.
That document also said that Lopez threatened to kill the woman, who had dated him for less than a year and last had contact with him in March of 2020.
Lopez will receive credit toward his sentence for the more than two-and-a-half years he has spent in the Hidalgo County Adult Detention Center awaiting the disposition of his case.