LUBBOCK, Texas — Ezequiel Valderas took a plea deal Thursday which reduces his charge from assault to disorderly conduct. Video of Valderas went viral when he tackled a man who showed up to a protest rally with a rifle. The incident was in May at the corner of 19th Street and University Avenue.
Valderas already served 19 days in jail. The deal, which reduced the charge to a class C misdemeanor, is more than covered by the time Valeras already served. He will also not need to pay a fine due to the time he served.
“It wasn’t the smartest thing to do under the circumstances, and it did result in a little bit of chaos,” said Valderas’ defense attorney Jeff Nicholson. “But as far as the way he went about it, I think a lot of people would like to think they would have done something like that.”
Not long after the death of George Floyd, protesters in Lubbock showed support for Black Lives Matter. It was at one such event that officials said Emmanuel Quinones showed up carrying a rifle.
Lubbock Police Officers ordered him to drop the gun, which he did. Valderas was standing closer to Quinones than the officers. A video showed Valderas rush toward Quinones and tackle him. In the confusion that followed, an officer suffered minor injuries.
Both were arrested. Quinones was charged with a federal crime and his case was still pending as of Friday.