CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, VA (The Village News) – A Guatemalan national residing in the U.S. illegally was sentenced to a total of four years in prison last week for killing a 4-year-old boy in a two-vehicle crash Aug. 25 last year.
Jose Armelio Gonzalez-Flores, 29, was given a total of 20-plus years with all but four years suspended.
Judge Frederick G. Rockwell III sentenced Gonzalez-Flores as part of a plea agreement to 10 years, all suspended, for cocaine possession; 10 years, with all but 3 1/2 years suspended, for involuntary manslaughter; and six months for driving on a suspended license.
A charge of felony hit-and-run was dismissed as part of a plea agreement.
Chesterfield police said a 2011 Dodge pickup struck a 2000 Toyota Camry in the rear on Belmont Road near Sue Jean Drive, south of Route 150. A photo submitted as part of the court record showed a Camry with North Carolina plates and a smashed-in trunk. Another photo showed an exhaust pipe on the road completely separated from the vehicle.
A 26-year-old man, a 24-year-old woman, and two boys, a 7-year-old and a 4-year-old, were injured in the crash. The adults — the boys’ parents — sustained serious injuries, and the boys sustained life-threatening injuries, according to a press release. All four victims were transported to an area hospital. The 4-year-old victim, Elias Emmanuel Camacho of Siler City, N.C., died the next day.
Gonzalez-Flores fled the scene in a blue 2011 Dodge pickup. He was arrested two days later, Aug. 27, at Don Jose Mexican restaurant in Colonial Heights, a court document states.
According to court documents, Gonzalez-Flores asked his girlfriend, Aura Davila, to report the truck as stolen, but she did not do so. Davila told police that Gonzalez-Flores was a cocaine user and had driven to North Carolina to pick up the drug in the past. He told police that, although he had consumed one alcoholic beverage at his job at Colonial Ridge Apartments on Aug. 25, but that he wasn’t under the influence of alcohol or drugs at the time of the crash. He worked for Victory Construction, a court document states.
Police said a rolled-up $20 bill with cocaine residue was found in the Dodge pickup. Gonzalez-Flores confirmed that it was cocaine, said he has used the drug the nights before and after the crash, and said he was a regular user.
He told police he fled the scene because his driver’s license was suspended and had an arrest warrant in Hopewell.
Gonzalez-Flores had been convicted 10 times for various misdemeanors in Chesterfield County from 2014 to 2018, including driving without a license, driving on a suspended license, speeding, reckless driving and failure to appear. He also was convicted for driving without a license in Williamsburg in 2015 and for speeding in Texas in 2014, court records state.
The Richmond Times-Dispatch reported that Gonzalez-Flores had been granted “semi-legal” immigration status under the Deferred Action of Childhood Arrivals (DACA) policy, but failed to renew it. The daily also stated that federal immigration authorities placed a detainer on him after his arrest.