MIDLAND, Texas (KMID/KPEJ)- A Midland man has been sentenced to a combined 45 years in prison after pleading guilty early this year to stabbing a family as well as a Sam’s Club employee in 2020. Prosecutors said Jose Gomez, then 19, attacked the Asian-American family- including two young children in a racially motivated attack at the onset of the coronavirus pandemic. 

The attack happened on March 14, 2020; following the incident, Gomez was charged with three counts of Attempted Capital Murder and one count of Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon. The Federal Bureau of Investigation later charged Gomez with multiple hate crimes in connection with the case after an intelligence report said he attacked the family- people he had never met because he thought they were “Chinese and infecting people with the coronavirus”. 

Gomez used a knife he found in the store and stabbed the young father after punching him in the face. His attack was cut short when an off-duty Border Patrol agent stepped in and stopped Gomez from doing further harm.

Following the incident, Midland District Attorney Laura Nodolf said, “There’s just no excuse. That is the bottom line. There is no excuse for committing a crime based on some type of racial motivation.”

Court records showed Gomez was sentenced to 25 years on count and 10 years each on two additional counts. The sentence will be served concurrently, and he will be eligible for parole after serving half his sentence.