South Texas man gets 50 years in fatal shooting of wife

March 3, 2019 GMT

BROWNSVILLE, Texas (AP) — A South Texas man has been sentenced to 50 years in prison after pleading guilty in the 2017 death of his wife, who was shot five times in front of two of their sons.

State District Judge Adolfo Cordova sentenced 40-year-old Alvaro Mata Jr. on Friday. Mata pleaded guilty in January to murder in the death of 36-year-old Jessica Cortina at their San Benito home.

All four of their sons were home at the time. Their 17-year-old and 4-year-old witnessed the shooting.

In a plea deal to spare the children from having to relive the killing, prosecutors asked for 20 to 50 years in prison for Mata. Before that, he’d faced up to 99 years.


Mata testified he accidently shot Cortina while enraged she wouldn’t let him look at her phone.