According to court documents, 30-year-old Thomas Miguel Guerra lied to his boyfriend about his HIV status when they first met in 2012. The two men dated for about a year and had unprotected sex “at Guerra’s urging,” the lawsuit claims.
The victim learned he had been exposed to the virus through a Facebook message from one of Guerra’s ex-boyfriends, who warned him that Guerra had a history of lying to people about his HIV status. The victim then went onto Guerra’s phone and found several text messages bragging to friends about infecting multiple people with his “positive load.”
The victim tested positive for HIV in May 2013. He filed a complaint against Guerra three months later.
City attorney Jan Goldsmith said this is the first prosecution of intentional HIV exposure in San Diego county since the statute was first adopted 20 years ago.
“I hope this case helps to educate people that it is a crime to willfully expose someone to an infectious disease,” he told KFMB TV station. “The law is designed to protect the public and, in this case, the right of one’s partner to know the truth.”
Guerra is scheduled to be sentenced next month. He faces up to six months behind bars a $1,000 fine.