Ethan man sentenced to 30 years on child abuse charges

Abuse occurred at suspect's home

Metro Creative photo

A judge Tuesday gave an Ethan man 30 years in prison on child abuse charges during sentencing in the First Judicial Court.

Margarito Anthony Garza, 35, was sentenced to 30 years in prison on three counts of first degree rape, a Class C felony; sexual contact with a minor under 16, a Class C felony and sexual exploitation of a minor, a Class 6 felony.

Judge Chris Giles sentenced Garza to 15 years in the penitentiary, with 5 years suspended, on each of the three counts of the charges. The three sentences are to run consecutively, which brings the total to 30 years.

According to court documents, law enforcement received a complaint that the defendant was sexually abusing three children, all under the age of 12, at his residence in Ethan. The children were ages 7, 8 and either 10 or 11 years old at the time. The complaint stated that the activity had been going on for over a year.

Erik Kaufman joined the Mitchell Republic in July of 2019 as an education and features reporter. He grew up in Freeman, S.D., graduating from Freeman High School. He graduated from the University of South Dakota in 1999 with a major in English and a minor in computer science. He can be reached at
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