TYLER, Texas — An East Texas man convicted of shooting at a sheriff’s deputy and then fleeing to Arkansas has been sentenced to life in prison.

Jurors in Smith County who convicted 33-year-old Ricardo Pineda of aggravated assault against a peace officer also decided Friday the Tyler man should be fined $10,000.

Pineda was the target of a federal and county drug investigation when he fired a dozen rifle shots at a Smith County deputy during a March 2016 car chase. The deputy’s car was disabled. Pineda later was arrested in Corning, Arkansas, about 400 miles (643.71 kilometers) to the northeast.

Pineda had a federal conviction in 2000 for possession and distribution of methamphetamine.

Prosecutors told jurors to send a message that shooting at law enforcement officers is not acceptable.

Author photo
The AP is one of the largest and most trusted sources of independent newsgathering. AP is neither privately owned nor government-funded; instead, as a not-for-profit news cooperative owned by its American newspaper and broadcast members, it can maintain its single-minded focus on newsgathering and its commitment to the highest standards of objective, accurate journalism.