(Anchorage, AK) – Thursday, in Anchorage, a jury found Jordan Joplin guilty of murdering Dr. Eric Garcia using a fatal dose of liquid morphine. Joplin, 38, was convicted of murder in the first degree, murder in the second degree, and theft in the first degree for the March 2017 death of 58-year-old Garcia.
“He killed Dr. Eric Garcia, a man who loved and trusted him, and he did it for money”, said Assistant Attorney General Erin McCarthyin her closing arguments.
On March 15, 2017, Joplin traveled from Washington State to Ketchikan to visit Dr. Eric Garcia, his friend and longtime romantic partner. Joplin returned to his home in Washington on March 17. The following day, March 18, Joplin called the Ketchikan Police Department and reported that he was expecting Dr. Garcia to come to Washington to visit him and was worried about Dr. Garcia because he had not arrived and Joplin had not heard from him.
On March 27, 2017, Joplin returned to Ketchikan and asked police to conduct a welfare check on Dr. Garcia. Joplin let the police into Dr. Garcia’s home using Dr. Garcia’s keys, which he had. He was also driving Dr. Garcia’s truck. Joplin told police he had last seen Dr. Garcia on March 16, 2017. When police entered Dr. Garcia’s home, they found him deceased. A later autopsy found that Dr. Garcia’s death was caused by the combined toxic effects of morphine, methadone, diazepam and lorazepam. Detectives also discovered that many items were missing from Dr. Garcia’s home, to include electronics, a valuable collection of coins, watches and jewelry valued over $50,000, and a collection of liquor valued at over $320,000. The detectives also learned that the alarm system in the home had been disabled.
During the investigation, detectives discovered that prior to his arrival in Ketchikan on March 15, Joplin arranged for three shipping containers to be delivered to Dr. Garcia’s residence on March 17. Detectives discovered that when those containers arrived on the 17th, Joplin loaded them with more than 4,000 pounds of Dr. Garcia’s belongings, including the missing valuables and many of Dr. Garcia’s personal items, and shipped them to Joplin’s residence in Washington.
Detectives later found Dr. Garcia’s cell phone and wallet in Joplin’s residence in Washington. They found multiple transfers totaling over $30,000 that had been made from Dr. Garcia’s bank accounts to Joplin’s accounts between March 16 and 30. On Joplin’s cell phone, detectives found a video taken on March 17, 2017 of Dr. Garcia, who appeared to be unconscious. The investigation determined that after that video was taken, later the night of March 17, Joplin used Dr. Garcia’s truck to drive to the airport to return to his Washington home.
The case was prosecuted by Assistant Attorney General Erin McCarthy and District Attorney Mark Clark. The Ketchikan Police Department conducted the investigation.
Sentencing for Mr. Joplin is scheduled for Oct. 5, 2023, in front of Judge Wolverton. He may be sentenced to a term of imprisonment of no less than 30 years and no more than 101 years.