By Jessica Mathews/

A Livingston County man is heading to prison after injuring a woman by throwing a sandbag through her windshield as she drove on I-96.

41-year-old David Vincent Garcia of Brighton was charged last year with three felony counts following an incident in Lyon Township; throwing objects at trains/cars causing serious impairment, assault with intent to do great bodily harm less than murder, and malicious destruction of personal property.

A previous defense motion to pursue an insanity defense was withdrawn and instead, Garcia entered a no contest plea to the charges. He appeared before Oakland County Circuit Court Judge Victoria Valentine via Zoom Tuesday afternoon and was ordered to serve 47 months to 15 years in prison. Garcia received an enhanced sentence on account of being a habitual offender.

Garcia was charged after police say he threw a sandbag off of the Old Plank Road overpass onto westbound I-96 on October 4th of 2020, seriously injuring Cindy Eckley of Livonia. Eckley earlier testified that she suffered serious facial and eye injuries when the sandbag came crashing through her windshield. Michigan State Police say the incident occurred after Garcia crashed his truck at that location and then walked up onto the overpass and threw a 40-pound sandbag onto the freeway below. Garcia was then picked up by a passerby who drove him to his home in Brighton. During the drive, troopers say Garcia told the passerby what had happened. That driver then contacted State Police and gave them Garcia’s address. State Police says Garcia’s shoes matched footprints found in the sand at the crime scene.

A restitution hearing is expected to be scheduled at a later date. Garcia has been free on bond with an electronic tether. He’s required to report to the Oakland County Jail by 9am tomorrow and was ordered to have no contact with the victim.