(KRON) — The man who was convicted of killing a Fairfield teen in an American Canyon Safeway parking lot has been sentenced to life in prison without parole, the Napa County District Attorney’s Office announced Friday. Christopher “Roly” Young, 26, of Martinez, was proven guilty of killing Nathan Gabriel Garza, 18, on August 16, 2020.
The DA said that Garza was completing curbside delivery orders at the grocery store when he was shot twice in the back by Young.
Young sped off in a Cadillac sedan that he was driving while he shot Garza, per the DA’s office. He abandoned the car on Cattail Drive and was arrested by Napa County Sheriff’s deputies after he reportedly hopped fences and went into backyards of neighboring homes.
Several of Garza’s friends and family were in court on Friday when Young was sentenced.
“My world, my family, my very being was shattered when Nathan was taken from us,” said his mother, Tracy Garza. “It has taken almost three years for the justice system, the honorable men and women in law enforcement and the Napa County District Attorney’s Office, and a panel of brave and dedicated jurors to find Christopher Young guilty of all charges.”
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Garza was a recent graduate of Rodriguez High School when he was killed. He was working a summer job at the Safeway before he was set to study at Diablo Valley College, the DA said.
Garza was “ambushed” by Young, and the two did not know each other, per the DA’s office.
Young was convicted of first-degree murder, shooting from a motor vehicle, felon in possession of a firearm, felon in possession of ammunition and giving false information to a police officer by a Napa jury on May 11, 2023. The jury also decided on special circumstances of personally and intentionally discharging a firearm, firing a weapon from a vehicle with the intent to inflict death and lying in wait.
In addition to Young’s prison sentence, the DA ordered restitution to be paid to Nathan’s loved ones.
Garza’s parents gave the following statement to the Napa County Sheriff’s Office:
“While nothing can bring Nathan back to us, it brings some measure of relief to know this murderer cannot take the life of another innocent person in the community. We have walked in the company and support of so many people of the highest caliber. We have tremendous respect for those in the Napa County District Attorney’s Office, Napa County Sheriff’s Department, and law enforcement. We could not ask for finer advocates and representatives for Nathan, in the pursuit of truth and justice. We are grateful for each member of the jury, as they put their lives on hold to serve the judicial system, their community, and ultimately our son. We are deeply grateful for our community, friends and family that continue to show their love for Nathan and our family, honoring him in prayer, word and action.
Above all we are proud of Nathan, the man he became, the lives he touched, and the good he brought to this world in those 18 precious years we shared with him.”