A Falls Church man convicted of killing Vanessa Pham, 19, was sentenced Friday to 49 years in prison, according to a report in The Washington Post. Julio Blanco Garcia, 27, a former day laborer, said during a hearing for the sentencing he was sorry for what he did. He received a first-degree murder conviction in August.
Pham was murdered June 27, 2010 after giving Garcia a ride from a Fairfax County shopping center off of Route 50. Garcia said he was high on drugs at the time. The lawyer said that Garcia feared that Pham—who was giving him a ride to the hospital from a Fairfax County parking lot— would harm his daughter, so Garcia took a butcher knife and stabbed her, according to the Post.
Authorities found her dead 30 minutes later after receiving a report of a crash near Arlington Boulevard and Williams Drive. The case went unsolved for over two and a half years. In December, Fairfax County Police arrested Garcia.
Pham was an alumna of Madison High School in Vienna and was studying fashion at the Savannah College of Art and Design at the time of her death. She lived in Falls Church with her mother.
Read our previous coverage:
- UPDATED: Arrest Made in Vanessa Pham Murder
- A Year After Pham's Death, Police Continue Search For Clues
- Asian-American Community Discusses Rising Crime, Pham Case
- After Arrest, Questions Around Vanessa Pham's Death Remain
- ICE: Suspect in Vanessa Pham Murder is in U.S. Illegally
- New Details Revealed in Vanessa Pham Murder Investigation
- Suspect Admits Stabbing Vanessa Pham in Trial Opening