4 sentenced to prison in Colorado crime spree that ended with murder

Posted at 1:12 PM, February 16, 2022 and last updated 12:41 AM, December 13, 2022

By: Stephanie Butzer

GOLDEN, Colo. (KMGH) — Two suspects were sentenced to prison on Tuesday following a four-person crime that ended in the murder of a Colorado man in October 2019.

Manuel Garcia, 20, and Autumn Lucero, 23, were sentenced to prison for their roles in the crime, according to the First Judicial District Attorney’s Office. Two other men involved in the crime had been sentenced in January.

L to R: Autumn Lucero, Alec Destree, Dominic Maestas, Manuel Garcia (Lakewood Police)

The crime spree spanned three cities on Oct. 14, 2019. Just after noon that day, Garcia, Lucero and Dominic Maestas, 21, robbed a group of high school students on their lunch break. The suspects were armed, the district attorney’s office said.

Later that evening, Garcia, Lucero, Maestas, and Alec Destree, 23, drove to a home in Littleton. Garcia fired multiple shots at a home’s windows and door. A family of four was inside, the district attorney’s office said.

After the shooting, the four suspects searched for a vehicle to steal or a person to rob.

Around midnight, 56-year-old Rene Perez was returning home from work as a janitor and parked his car in an apartment parking lot. As he got out of the vehicle, Destree shot him. The suspects then fled from the scene, the district attorney’s office said.

Perez died from his injuries.

The suspects, all from Denver, were arrested in November 2019.

Garcia pleaded guilty to second-degree murder, attempt to commit first-degree assault, and robbery. He received 41 years in prison.

Lucero pleaded guilty to illegal discharge of a firearm, accessory to a crime, and second-degree assault. She was sentenced to 12 years in prison.

Earlier this year, the two other defendants, Destree and Maestas, were sentenced.

Destree was sentenced to life in prison after a jury found him guilty of first-degree murder, second-degree murder, conspiracy to commit aggravated robbery and three counts of aggravated robbery, and Maestas was sentenced to 22 years after he pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and aggravated robbery.

“You have an innocent family who was terrorized in their own home, innocent children who were terrorized while on their lunch break from school, and an innocent man who paid the ultimate price for not giving up his car keys – all for nothing,” said Chief Deputy District Attorney Brenna Zortman. “Not one person – not even one – did anything to put themselves in the path that these defendants carved that day. These were innocent, random victims whose lives were forever changed. I hope these final sentences provide a sense of justice to everyone who was impacted by this tragedy.”

This story was originally published Feb. 16, 2022 by KMGH-TV in Denver, an E.W. Scripps Company.