Man Gets 30 Years In Shooting Deaths Of 2 Colorado Teens

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) — A man who pleaded guilty to conspiracy in the shooting deaths of two Colorado Springs teenagers was sentenced Monday to 30 years in prison.

Marco Garcia-Bravo, 34, was sentenced during a tearful hearing after previously pleading guilty to two counts of conspiracy to commit second-degree murder in the 2017 deaths of 16-year-old Natalie Cano-Partida and 15-year-old Derek Greer, The Colorado Springs Gazette reported.

Investigators said the teens were abducted from a party in Colorado Springs, driven to a remote location and made to kneel for the shootings after begging for their lives.

Addressing the courtroom by phone, Greer’s mother, Heather Ferguson, called the penalty unfair to her son. She said he was a “great kid” who was kind to everyone.

“He was the reason I loved,” she said, adding that Garcia-Bravo will one day be free, but “I will never have a fully happy day in my life.”

Garcia-Bravo is the last of 10 people to be prosecuted in what authorities called a revenge plot by the South Side Soldados, whose members suspected Cano-Partida of helping a rival street gang plan back-to-back shootings targeting them. Greer was abducted because he was with Cano-Partida at the party, according to authorities who said neither had anything to do with gang attacks.

Garcia-Bravo was initially charged with first-degree murder and accused of being one of two gunmen in the shootings, but his trial ended with a hung jury in February. A plea deal averted a retrial that was set to begin Wednesday.

He declined to address the court Monday, and no one spoke in his support. One of his attorneys limited her comments to asking the judge to accept the plea deal.

Diego Chacon is serving a 65-year prison sentence after pleading guilty in December 2018 to two counts of second-degree murder.