David Arnoldo Mota

21-year-old David Arnoldo Mota was arrested on charges of first degree murder, drive by shooting, and aggravated assault after an apparent road rage incident resulted in the death of 22-year-old Joshua Stephan Switalski. The shooting occurred in Oro Valley near Oracle and First Avenue. He was found not guilty on all charges on March 26. 

After four days of trial, San Manuel resident David Mota was found not guilty on all charges, including first degree murder, drive by shooting, and aggravated assault. 

Mota was arrested on Feb. 28, 2013 after he discharged his firearm twice during a traffic altercation with 22-year-old Joshua Switalski in Oro Valley. One of the bullets struck and killed Switalski.

The jury came to the decision yesterday at about 4 p.m., after deliberating for nearly five hours. Following the decision, one juror was overheard saying there was not enough evidence to negate Mota's self-defense claim.

Mota was also found not guilty on a lesser charge of disorderly conduct.

A follow-up story will be conducted in the days to come.

Coverage of each of the four days of trial leading to the verdict are linked below.

Day 1: http://explorernews.com/news/article_d905bb86-af13-11e3-8035-0019bb2963f4.html

Day 2: http://explorernews.com/article_7d48d990-afea-11e3-8daa-0019bb2963f4.html

Day 3: http://explorernews.com/article_45fd91da-b08d-11e3-8037-0019bb2963f4.html

Day 4: http://explorernews.com/article_0b465bf0-b496-11e3-9f15-0019bb2963f4.html

(9) comments


This is such a travesty of justice! I’m shocked and dumbfounded that this happened and a man got away with murder! Every citizen should be concerned over this. Someone can gun you down in cold blood and all they have to do is say that you scared them. “Following the decision, one juror was overheard saying there was not enough evidence to negate Mota's self-defense claim”. Basically that the burden to prove what was on Mota's mind as he shot was on the prosecution and they couldn't do that. OF COURSE it can’t be proven what is going on in a shooters mind. With that logic NOBODY can be held responsible for shooting an innocent citizen! “Well I thought they were going to hurt me….eventually…probably..” and that’s it. NOT GUILTY! Sickening. The only consolation to a grieving family, who senselessly lost a loving son, nephew, sweet little kids who lost their uncle, a brother dear to their heart……the only consolation they have is that David Mota will stand before the ultimate Judgement….and that Judge DID see it all and DOES know what was in his mind and heart and in the end, even if it’s not in this lifetime…..he WILL have to account for what he did! But our justice system…..what a joke!

Joe Justice

This is completely ridiculous, no evidence to negate self defence? How about the fact that Josh didn't have a weapon or even owned a weapon and Mota had three weapons in the car? A trained soldier who shot a gun at an unarmed kid. Because he was scared.

Another sad day for the United States Justice System when a person can drink, drive, murder and flee without consequence.


Judging by the coverage of the trial, this is incredibly disturbing news and deserves much more attention and critical examination. A person was killed while driving in a car by a man who was, to quote the defense, “not savvy to the ways of the world.” His method of solving a verbal altercation was by shooting bullets at it. I've been told my whole life not to react with gestures or verbal insults at a dangerous driver because, you know, it might be a crazy person who will shoot you. This is that crazy person! And the community has basically said he had every right to fire his weapon and flee the scene. How could such violent behavior go unpunished? What kind of precedent does this verdict set for future violent acts in our community? This is insanity.


I agree with all three previous comments, especially about the ultimate Judge. This is a scary reflection of our society, and especially of that jury. What are we coming to, and what will people get away with next???
There seems to be no protection for victims anymore, or for their families. Only protection for people like David Mota, a trained soldier, who apparently scares easily, and cannot control himself. Hope I never meet him, because I might look at him wrong and get shot!!
I hope that everyone involved in that trial, especially the jurors and defense lawyers, read these comments and listen to the public outrage over this verdict!! They have to know deep inside that these families have not only lost Josh, but also the hope that there is any justice or closure, for them, while Mota walks away , a free murderer!! What have they done????


At this point, I am just embarrassed to say I am from the city of Tucson. It is now ranked the most dangerous city in Arizona, and this would be a prime example why. This case should have been used as an example to the city of Tucson as a whole.. Instead, it is now fuel to the fire for more crimes similar to this to happen, and to go unpunished. Can someone explain to me how possession of marijuana gets months, even YEARS, in prison, but SHOOTING and KILLING someone (and admitting to it!) gets no punishment at all? This is a sad, sad day for the state of Arizona, and I am incredibly sad for humanity in general. I at least hope this stays on the conscious of David Mota, that defending lawyer, and the jury that made this hollow decision for a very long time. You have opened the door for more senseless crimes to be committed with no repercussion.

Robin Justice

The laws MUST change. A Reasonable person would not shoot someone over a verbal altercation over cutting someone off. A reasonable person would not shoot twice and run and try and hide. Just being afraid should not give someone the right to fire an illegal weapon. Proven in the trial the victim was driving away rolling up window and going on with life the shooter/murderer was turning left clearly seeing him roll up the window and drive away. He chose to shoot his weapon because as the defense attorney stated that is all he knows drinking and shooting guns. He was a son, a brother, an uncle, a nephew, a cousin, a godfather, the love of someone(soulmate) the sweetest man you would ever meet. He helped strangers, he was there for friends and family whenever you needed him, he was gentle, he was a big teddy bear, he was dearly loved and deeply missed.
Be careful folks this is not the first miscarriage of justice of this type, there are soo many killed or severely injured and no justice because the shooter said I was afraid. He or his passenger did NOT call 911, the victim NEVER stopped or got out of the vehicle, he saw the car veering to the emergency lane as he turned and kept going. The victim had 15 seconds from the time the bullet entered his body until unconsciousness and managed to get the car to the side of the road. It is an injustice but we believe God is the greater Judge good luck David may Karma get you over and over and I will rejoice with the Lord when you are judged.
There was NO REMORSE so it will happen again, be careful and never respond to drivers cutting you off....It could be David

Scully Blutbad

Unbelievable. I would expect a verdict like this in Florida, but I thought we were smarter than that here. Apparently all you have to do to get away with murder now days is claim you were afraid and it was self defense. If Mota follows in the footsteps of George Zimmerman from FLA, it won't be long before he's arrested again for similar crimes.

John Flanagan

Where do we live? Is this Dodge City in the days of the gunfighters?Can we all agree that, yes, the second amendment allows us to protect ourselves...however...not all people have the common sense and rationality to carry a gun? I have been "cut off" in traffic many times in my life...so what! I let it go, just proceed on my way...why make a big deal out of it? I told my sons to never get into a traffic altercation....just back off...not out of cowardice...out of sanity. The other driver could turn out to be a nut case, a trigger happy jerk itching for an excuse to pull their weapon out and use it. Of course, since many people with guns these days are paranoid and feel threatened, you find that road rage is a real problem. Some people make it "personal" when you unintentionally cut them off, drive too slow, or bother them by just being on the road. I don't know tge facts of whether the victim provoked the incident or not, but it is likely he did not shoot at the other driver, merely it appeared threatening enough for the other guy to draw his weapon. It is so sad. A young man is dead, and for what? I don't think this country can brag that we are better than other places in the world, not when people are shot on the street like dogs.


I feel afraid of the jury, can I kill them?

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