By J.D. Wallace, KOLD News 13 Reporter
Pictures of Michael Dojaquez show a happiness and zest for life that the 45-year-old yoga instructor was known for, but his family says they're nothing compared to the real thing.
"My son will never get to hear him say, "Keep it squeezy," or "Oom-bop-uh-loom-bop-a-wang-bang-boom." He'll never get to hear that again. All I have now are pictures and memories,” said Brianna Dojaquez, the 20-year-old daughter of Michael Dojaquez, in court on Monday.
Dojaquez was shot to death in September 2003. His lover, 30-year-old Amber Trudell, was convicted of second degree murder in her second trial, after the first ended in a hung jury. At her sentencing on Monday, she displayed little emotion as Dojaquez's daughters, brother, and mother weighed in.
"The world has a lot of sadness, and has a lot of wrong things with it, and he was the perfect antidote,” said Lydia Dojaquez, Michael Dojaquez’s mother.
"I can only think that you are a woman with no conscience and no guilt. And for you to pull the trigger that night and kill my brother, I have not yet found it in my heart to forgive you,” said Robert Dojaquez, Michael Dojaquez’s brother.
Prosecutor Kathleen Mayer requested the maximum sentence, 16 years. She said that even if Trudell didn't plan Dojaquez's murder, she drew the gun that would kill him. But Public Defender Tom Martin wanted ten years for Trudell. He said that Trudell's sexual abuse as a child has possibly clouded her judgement through life.
"Michael would not be up here demanding the maximum sentence for her because of the humanistic view of life he had,” Tom Martin said.
Ultimately, neither side would be happy, as Trudell received 13 years.
"I think it was unfair. I think she should have got more than 13. I think she should have got more than 16. I think she should have gotten the rest of her life, because that's how long I get to spend without my dad,” Brianna Dojaquez said.
Public Defender Tom Martin says he’ll likely appeal Trudell’s sentence.
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