Suspect identified, charged in alleged assault of park ranger - Tucson News Now

Suspect identified, charged in alleged assault of park ranger

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DOUGLAS, AZ (Tucson News Now) -

A man suspected of beating up a park ranger over the summer now faces multiple charges.

Authorities said the man allegedly assaulted a Chiricahua National Monument National Park Service employee with a rock, which caused life-threatening injuries.

The victim was taken by helicopter to the University of Arizona Medical Center.

Her assigned work vehicle was taken from the scene and later found in Douglas. An FBI team sent some items from the car to the Department of Public Safety Laboratory for evaluation.

The evidence team matched the items to a possible suspect, who agents discovered was apprehended on Aug. 29 in Douglas, one day after the car was found just three blocks away.

More testing in January linked evidence to 33-year-old Gil Gaxiola, according to a news release. He was indicted on Jan. 16 on charges of attempted first degree murder, attempted second degree murder, armed robbery, aggravated assault, kidnapping and theft of means of transportation.

"We are extremely proud of our employees who put so much time and effort into tracking down this suspect who had the audacity to coldly and callously beat a federal employee almost to death before blatantly using her vehicle to go to a fast food drive thru," Sheriff Mark Dannels stated in the release.

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