GOLDEN, Colo. (Jun. 30, 2023) – Juan Ocegueda was sentenced to 24 years in prison today for the stabbing of a security guard at a dental appointment last summer, in addition to other crimes. As a result of Ocegueda’s global plea last month, he faced a sentencing range of 16-24 years in the Department of Corrections. Ocegueda is now 18 years old and has four separate and distinct felony convictions.
In Jefferson County, on May 1, 2023, Ocegueda pled guilty to Assault in the First Degree (F3) and Crime of Violence (SE). The parties stipulated to a sentence of 16-24 years to run concurrent to the following cases: Weld County 22CR374, Larimer County 22CR1165, and 22CR1170. Jefferson County cases 22CR2411 and 22JD349, which were assault cases that Ocegueda committed while in the Rocky Mountain Youth Services Center, were dismissed as part of the plea.
On May 31, 2022, Ocegueda was taken to a routine orthodontist appointment at Primary Care Dental in Lakeside. He was 17 years old and in the custody of Platte Valley Youth Services in Greeley. Accompanying him was a 53-year-old Division of Youth Services security specialist known to Ocegueda, as he had accompanied him to these appointments before.
During the appointment, Ocegueda asked to use the restroom, so the victim uncuffed his right hand. Ocegueda was in the restroom for approximately ten minutes. When Ocegueda came out, he had a knife, or knife-like object, and stabbed the victim multiple times in his arm, abdomen, shoulder, and neck. Ocegueda then chased a dental employee down a hallway, pointing the knife at her before escaping.
After an hours-long manhunt, Ocegueda was found hiding in a nearby garage and was arrested. The knife was never recovered.
In today’s argument to the court, Deputy District Attorney Margaret Crabb read letters from the victims and their families, detailing the significant impact this crime had on their lives. One family member stated, “Our future is different” because of Ocegueda’s actions, and that after 25 years in youth corrections, this crime has forced early retirement.
Despite his young age, Ocegueda has an extensive history of aggravated and violent crimes. On Dec. 10, 2021, Ocegueda escaped from custody while serving an 18-month juvenile sentence. Between Dec. 10 and Jan. 8, Ocegueda picked up four new felony cases in Weld and Larimer Counties, including Second Degree Assault, Aggravated Motor Vehicle Theft, Aggravated Robbery, and Attempted Murder. He was finally arrested on Jan. 27, 2022. The case he was sentenced on today occurred in May of 2022.
Prosecutors asked for the maximum sentence of 24 years… “The people do not take a 24-year Department of Corrections sentence on an 18-year-old lightly,” said Crabb. “However, in light of the violent and aggravated nature of this crime and his extensive criminal history, this sentence is appropriate and necessary to ensure the safety of the community.”
This case is the first to go to sentencing as part of the global plea deal. Ocegueda will be sentenced in Weld County on Jul. 13, 2023, and in Larimer County on Jul. 31, 2023.