Luz Mariana Matheu and David Garcia-Mendoza
Photo: DeKalb jail
Photo: DeKalb jail

DeKalb cab driver refused drugs as payment, so man murdered her

David Garcia-Mendoza was drunk and high and wanted something for nothing on Oct. 1, 2016, when he climbed into a cab on Buford Highway.

Luz Mariana Matheu, 43, was behind the wheel for OK Taxi that night in Chamblee. Garcia-Mendoza, 21 at the time, said he would pay her with drugs, which Matheu refused.

As they argued, the young man placed a gun to the woman’s head and forced her to drive, according to authorities. In a few moments, he pulled the trigger and ran away when the car crashed.

Luz Mariana Matheu and David Garcia-Mendoza
Photo: (DeKalb County)

But police found him hiding in a kudzu patch, and he’s now pleaded guilty to felony murder, kidnapping and aggravated assault, the DeKalb County District Attorney’s Office announced Tuesday.

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“During a police interrogation,” DA’s spokeswoman Yvette Jones said, “the Defendant admitted being under the influence of drugs and alcohol and shooting the victim because she would not accept drugs as payment for his taxi ride.”

Now 22, Garcia-Mendoza was sentenced to life plus five years in prison by Judge Gregory A. Adams.

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In other news:

The first day of class for metro Atlanta schools really has gotten earlier. Cobb County students go back to school July 31. Atlanta's first day is Aug. 1. DeKalb, Fulton and Gwinnett start Aug. 7.

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