Lexington County man accused of targeting Hispanics sentenced to - wistv.com - Columbia, South Carolina

Lexington County man accused of targeting Hispanics sentenced to life in prison

(Source: Lexington County Sheriff's Department) (Source: Lexington County Sheriff's Department)

A Lexington County man will spend the rest of his life in prison for the murder of a father of four more than two years ago in West Columbia.

After a week-long trial, Ricky Lamont Esaw, 42, was sentenced to life without parole on Thursday for the shooting death of Hector Vasquez in August of 2015.

Investigators say back in August of 2015, Esaw pointed a gun at Vasquez, his 17-year-old son and a family friend demanding money. When Vasquez came to the defense of his son, he was shot in the upper-body. He later died during surgery at a hospital in Richland County. Vasquez’s son was also shot but he survived.

The shooting happened at the Meadow Homes mobile home park. Officials say a Crimestoppers tip helped lead deputies to the arrest.

The Richland County Sheriff’s Department and the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division also assisted the Lexington County Sheriff’s Office with the investigation.

Esaw had a prior record of convictions including aggravated assault, and armed robbery out of Jasper County where he was sentenced to prison for twelve years in 2001. Authorities said the crimes in Jasper County involved a string of robberies in which Hispanic males were the target of brutal attacks. 

Family members of Hector Vasquez spoke at the sentencing hearing and shared memories of Vasquez as a devoted husband of twenty years and a dedicated father of four.

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