AUSTIN, Texas – A Central Texas man who pleaded guilty to manslaughter in the accidental shooting death of his 7-year-old neighbor has received an eight-year prison sentence.
Jose Barrera Espitia told investigators that he was target shooting in the backyard of his rural Hays County home in April 2007 when he accidentally hit and killed the boy, who was jumping on a trampoline. Espitia said he did not see Daniel Galicia jumping on a trampoline in his back yard before firing the .22-caliber rifle.
Galicia died within an hour of being shot.
Espitia's home is about one-third of a mile from where the boy was playing with other children in his cousin's backyard. The area east of Kyle has a mix of farmland and mobile homes.
The Galicia family had asked for a tougher sentence for Espitia, who had entered his plea Wednesday, Hays County District Attorney Sherri Tibbe told the Austin American Statesman for its Friday editions.
Manslaughter, a felony, carries a maximum state prison sentence of 20 years.
Galicia's mother said she takes no comfort in the sentence.
"I told the judge, 'I no longer have my son,"' Faustina Galicia said.