Man who was critically injured in assault dies

A man critically injured after suffering head injuries from an assault near Livingston late Saturday night has died, the Merced County Sheriff's Department reported.

The victim, 44-year-old Angel Garcia of Livingston, had been on life support since Saturday. Doctors at a Modesto hospital removed him from life support on Wednesday, according to Deputy Tom MacKenzie, sheriff's spokesman.

Garcia's death has now become a homicide investigation, making him the 10th reported victim of homicide this year in Merced County, MacKenzie said.

No suspects are in custody, and detectives have released very little information about the attack. The incident was reported around 10:30 p.m., after Garcia's body was found lying in the 4100 block of Lincoln Boulevard.

Investigators initially said Garcia was hit on the head with a shovel, although they now believe he may have been struck with another object.

Investigators are asking anyone with information about the incident to call (209) 385-7445. Callers can remain anonymous.

Reporter Victor A. Patton can be reached at (209) 385-2431 or