A 20-year-old Mabton man who killed the mother of his young daughter on Christmas Eve was sentenced to more than 32 years in prison during an emotional hearing in Kennewick.
Francisco Munoz Quintero will turn 50 before he’s released from prison after a jury convicted him of second-degree murder, domestic violence and other charges related to the death of his ex-girlfriend, Luisa Garcia Farias, 22.
Judge Jackie Shea Brown said aggravating circumstances, including the use of a gun, the presence of a young child, a history of domestic violence and the callous treatment of the victim after the shooting, warranted a sentence above the standard range of 23 years.
Prosecutor Andy Miller had asked for nearly 42 years.
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Shea Brown encouraged Munoz Quintero to use the long years in prison to face his crime and to become a better person.
“Mr. Munoz Quintero will have some time to consider the gravity of his actions,” she said, adding a reminder of what was lost that night. “Luisa did much good in her young life. She was a remarkable young woman.”
Luisa did much good in her young life. She was a remarkable young woman.
Judge Jackie Shea Brown, Benton County Superior Court
He shot Garcia Farias twice during an argument as she drove him from his family’s home in Mabton to Kennewick after her Christmas Eve shift at Walmart.
The couple’s 22-month-old daughter, Aliah, was in the backseat. After firing the shots, Munoz Quintero pushed her body onto a Kennewick street and drove away, leading to 911 calls from witnesses.
Miller said the killer treated his victim’s body “like garbage.”
In a tearful statement to the court, Munoz Quintero apologized to Garcia Farias, her family and to his daughter.
“I can’t find the right words to express how much I regret all of this,” he said, adding a plea for forgiveness.
He also addressed his daughter, who was not in court.
“Aliah, I’m sorry baby girl. I love you. It tears me apart that you don’t have Mommy and Daddy at your side,” he said.
Aliah, I’m sorry baby girl. I love you. It tears me apart that you don’t have Mommy and Daddy at your side.
Francisco Munoz Quintero, convicted murderer
The judge signed a no-contact order to protect the Garcia family from unwanted contact from the Munoz family. The two families have a case pending in family court over the Munoz family’s petition for access to the girl.
Miller read a statement by Maria Farias, the victim’s mother, that described her daughter as a young woman beloved by everyone who knew her. Farias said little Aliah still asks when her Mommy is coming back. She said the little girl blows kisses at the ceiling when she goes to bed.
“I think she knows Luisa is not coming back,” she said. “The house is not the same without her.”
Munoz Quintero and the victim, a Pasco native who attended Pasco High School and then New Horizons High School, were living in North Dakota when she fled the violent relationship.
She returned with her daughter to the Tri-Cities and found a job as a loss-prevention officer at Walmart.
On the day she died, she drove her daughter to Sunnyside to spend the day with her father and his family, then reported to work. After her stressful Christmas Eve shift, she returned to collect the girl and agreed to give Munoz Quintero a ride Kennewick.
The judge said the generous gesture spoke volumes about the victim.
“I think she was the giver in the relationship,” she said. “She was quite a selfless person.”