- Associated Press - Saturday, December 19, 2015

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - A Midvale man must serve at least 16 years for shooting and killing his wife while he was driving, according to a Salt Lake City judge.

Judge Paul Parker sentenced Komasquin Lopez, 45, on Friday to 16 years to life in prison for the 2013 death of Shannon Lopez, who was a passenger in her husband’s truck when she was fatally shot in the head.

Komasquin Lopez, however, maintained his innocence. Shortly before the judge handed out the sentence, Komasquin Lopez again denied shooting his 32-year-old wife.

“I did not shoot my wife,” he said. “I’ll never admit to that, because I did not do it.”

Parker, however, says Komasquin Lopez’s murder conviction was deserved, the Deseret News reported (http://bit.ly/1Ysgyw7).

“The jury made the decision that they needed to make,” Parker said.

Komasquin Lopez mostly appeared detached and relaxed throughout the proceedings.

Defense attorney Nick Falcone said it would be impossible for Komasquin Lopez to take the shot as he turned onto a busy street. The truck slammed into a car moments after the shot was fired.

The husband testified that his wife was high on methamphetamine and killed herself Dec. 27, 2013.

But prosecutors said Shannon Lopez, 32, didn’t kill herself because she wouldn’t have left the care of her sons to anyone else.

They said she wanted to end her marriage, and that it was her husband who was high on meth and angry when he killed her.

Prosecutors also argued that most people who shoot themselves don’t aim for the ear. Shannon Lopez was right-handed but was killed with a shot to her left side, they said.

Komasquin Lopez was arrested two weeks after her death. A jury found him guilty of murder in September after a four-day trial.

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Information from: Deseret News, http://www.deseretnews.com

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