A not-so-sweet story is coming to light this week about 29-year-old Thomas Guerra, who has also gone by the name Ashton Chavez, and whom San Diego prosecutors are now building a case against involving multiple claims that Guerra intentionally infected other men with HIV and lied about his status. It's believed, as ABC 7 and others are reporting, that Guerra is in fact the great nephew of labor leader Cesar Chavez, and that he may have also infected men in Fresno and San Francisco, in addition to San Diego.

Stories like this were a staple of TV news during the AIDS crisis of the late 80s and early 90s, and though we all understand that HIV is no longer a death sentence and should not be as stigmatized as it still is, when cases like this emerge it only further works to vilify those with the virus in the eyes of society.

The story first emerged out of San Diego earlier this week when a recent former boyfriend came forward to local authorities to accuse Guerra of intentionally infecting after lying about his HIV status during a year-long relationship. Another former boyfriend reached out to this one on Facebook to warn him about Guerra, after which the latest boyfriend got tested and found out he was HIV positive. Then he proceeded to find texts on Guerra's phone, "where he’s stating he’s negative to people then bragging to others about giving people his ‘positive load.’"

Now a San Francisco resident has come forward to say that he met Guerra on Grindr or a similar app/site, and that two dated for four months while Guerra was technically living in Fresno. He, too, trusted Guerra when he said he was HIV-negative and he, too, was allegedly infected by Guerra.

Another anonymous victim says he's found 24 separate people who may have been infected by Guerra. A family friend who helped raise Guerra after he came out as gay — and was disowned by his parents — told ABC 7, "I cannot and I don't believe that he is really doing that."

[ABC 7]