Cameron County Assistant District Attorney Peter Gilman requested the stiff sentence to send a message to public servants willing to steal from taxpayers, the Herald reported.
"We feel a strong message should be sent," Gilman said.
Under Texas law, Escamilla faced up to 99 years in prison for the first-degree felony, NBC News reported. Theft of property becomes a first-degree felony when a person steals property valued at $200,000 or more.
An additional theft charge against the defendant was dismissed as part of an earlier plea deal.
Escamilla was fired Aug. 8 and arrested at his home, where investigators found packages of fajitas in his refrigerator. The detectives were able to track down some of his customers, who cooperated with the investigation.
Escamilla was given a moment to tell his family goodbye before being escorted from court Friday, the Herald reported. He was taken to the Cameron County Jail to await transfer into the state prison system.