Eric Garcia allegedly intervened to stop his daughter from being attacked by her boyfriend on Saturday, but by the following Thursday night, Garcia had died from his injuries

By Joelle Goldstein
March 30, 2019 12:46 AM
Eric Garcia
GoFundMe/Team Garcia Family

A Texas father died this week after he was allegedly attacked as he attempted to protect his daughter from her boyfriend.

Last Saturday, Eric Garcia intervened when he allegedly witnessed his daughter’s boyfriend of one month, Jaime Apodaca, physically and verbally assaulting her, KXAN reports.

The fight between the men became so violent that Garcia was left with a skull fracture, an inter-cranial trauma, and a herniated brain — injuries so severe that he eventually died, CBS Austin said.

According to an arrest warrant obtained by KXAN, Garcia first came to the defense of his daughter on the morning of March 23, after hearing Apodaca allegedly yelling at her, calling her derogatory names, and accusing her of cheating on him.

Apodaca, 24 — who had been staying with the Garcias at their Austin home — allegedly threw the first punch at Garcia after he asked the boyfriend to leave, according to a police report obtained by CBS Austin.

After getting into the altercation, Apocada allegedly took a swing at his girlfriend as she attempted to pull him away from her father, according to the arrest warrant KXAN reports.

Eric Garcia
GoFundMe/Team Garcia Family

The fight allegedly continued down a flight of stairs and then outside the home, according to the warrant.

It was there that Apodaca allegedly punched Garcia so hard that he hit his head on the cement sidewalk, causing major brain swelling and injury, Rock Schouman, Garcia’s friend said on a Facebook campaign page.

“His heart quit beating on the driveway and it took over 15 minutes with the paramedics to get his heartbeat back,” Schouman explained.

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Garcia was transported to a hospital, where he was admitted to the Intensive Care Unit and put in a coma and on a breathing machine. According to KXAN, Garcia had suffered a skull fracture, an inter-cranial trauma, and a herniated brain.

Schouman set up a GoFundMe campaign for Garcia’s family to help with expenses so they could “get through this trying time without losing their home.”

Schouman added on Facebook of his friend: “He would have helped any of us, and that is fact.”

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On Thursday, Schouman announced that the father of three had sadly succumbed to his injuries. “So Eric Garcia moved into the light this evening. He was surrounded by his loved ones, and he will be deeply missed by many,” he wrote on GoFundMe.

As of Friday evening, the GoFundMe campaign had raised over $3,400 while the Facebook fundraiser had more than $3,500.

Apodaca currently remains at the Travis County Jail and has been charged with robbery, aggravated assault with serious bodily injury, assault causing bodily injury, assault causing bodily injury to a family member, evading arrest/detention, and tamper/fabricate physical evidence with intent to impair, according to inmate records from the Travis County Jail obtained by PEOPLE.

His bonds currently total $165,000. At this time, it is unclear if Apodaca has retained an attorney.

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Speaking to KXAN after the incident, Schouman said his friend was simply trying to do the right thing by defending his daughter.

“He tried to split up a fight,” Schouman said to the outlet. “He was such a quiet, nice, humble person, you know. He didn’t really deserve what happened to him.”