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Utah Supreme Court overturns conviction for man accused of killing wife


SALT LAKE CITY — The Utah Supreme Court has overturned a 2013 conviction for a Midvale man accused of taking pictures his wife within the head as they drove down State Street in combination.

Komasquin Lopez, now 47, used to be found guilty via a jury of killing his wife, 32-year-old Shannon Lopez, and of the use of a gun to do it. He had insisted at trial that he did not kill his wife however that she shot herself within the passenger seat with a gun he stored in his truck. Just after the gun fired, Lopez crashed his truck close to 7200 S. State.

Shannon Lopez had used a “toxic” quantity of methamphetamine previous to the crash, in keeping with a scientific examiner. Komasquin Lopez additionally admitted to having methamphetamine in his machine, and mentioned the couple were arguing over Shannon Lopez’s drug use and their monetary issues.

Komasquin Lopez maintained he used to be blameless as he used to be sentenced in December 2015 to spend a minimum of 16 years and as much as existence in jail.

“I did not shoot my wife,” Lopez mentioned on the time. “I’ll never admit to that, because I did not do it.”

In a choice passed down Friday, Utah’s prime courtroom decided that prosecutors had now not correctly asserted at trial whether or not the methodology a medical psychiatrist used to measure if Shannon Lopez used to be in peril of taking her personal existence is a in most cases accredited solution to evaluation somebody who has already died.

Justice John Pearce, who penned the verdict, famous that some proof, like the truth that the girl used to be right-handed however used to be shot within the left aspect of her head, reinforced the state’s case. Other proof supported Lopez’s protection, like the truth that Shannon Lopez used to be skilled sufficient with firearms to shoot along with her left hand and had mentioned suicide up to now.

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“Given this conflicting evidence, Dr. (Craig) Bryan’s opinion that Shannon’s death was inconsistent with suicide likely swayed the jury. It was the strongest statement the state introduced to demonstrate that Shannon’s death was not a suicide,” Pearce wrote.

Lopez additionally argued that allegations must now not were admitted at trial that he had up to now pointed a gun at his wife’s head, and that he had threatened to kill an ex-wife if she divorced him. The Utah Supreme Court agreed, discovering that the proof used to be now not equivalent sufficient to be admitted within the case, and that the tips will have influenced the jury.

Lopez’s case used to be remanded to the third District Court, the place he would possibly face a brand new trial. He remained in jail Saturday.


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