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Sentencing delayed for accomplice in Utah triple murder

Published February 28, 2014 9:38 am

Courts • Lawyers say outstanding issues must be resolved first.
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West Jordan • A man who was present during a triple homicide at a Midvale home last year will have to wait another month to be sentenced for loaning his truck to the alleged triggerman.

Davis Romney Fotu, 33, was scheduled to be sentenced Friday, but lawyers asked for a new date, citing unspecified "outstanding issues."

Fotu pleaded guilty in October to second-degree felony obstructing justice and faces up to 15 years in prison when he is sentenced on March 28.

But he is unlikely to serve any time behind bars on the obstructing justice charge.

In a deal with prosecutors, Fotu agreed to testify against alleged shooter David Fresques, 26, in the triple homicide that left Omar Jarman, 35, Danielle Lucero, 26, and Shontay Young, 34, dead inside a Midvale home.

Prosecutors will likely recommend several years probation in lieu of prison for Fotu's involvement in the Midvale killings.

He will likely be sent to jail in connection with other unrelated crimes for which he will also be sentenced next month.

Fresques faces three counts of aggravated murder and one count of attempted aggravated murder in connection with the slaying.

Fotu's cooperation helped prosecutors build a case against Fresques that resulted in a 3rd District judge ordering him to stand trial for the killings.

Fotu testified during a February preliminary hearing that Fresques shot up the home at 8286 S. Adams St. (450 West) while Fotu and his then-girlfriend were inside.

Though Fotu said he didn't see anyone get shot, he heard the sound of gunfire. He didn't understand why Fresques began shooting, he testified.

According to other witnesses, drug deals were a frequent occurrence at the home and drew a constant parade of people.

Fresques, who had been to the home before, knew the people who lived there and at least two of the alleged victims.

Jarman, whom witnesses testified Fresques considered a snitch, was shot as he sat on a chair in the living room of the home. Young, who was asleep in a recliner in the same room, was killed in her sleep.

Lucero, who was found in bed inside an upstairs bedroom, was shot twice. It was not immediately clear whether Fresques had ever met Lucero.

Fresques has pleaded not guilty to all charges.

His attorneys have argued the state's case is unreliable and inconsistent — based heavily on witnesses who had been doing drugs and committing crimes of their own at the time of the killings.

Prosecutors have 60 days to decide whether or not they will seek the death penalty against Fresques in this case, which has been set for a four-week trial in March 2015.

Fotu, who has been in custody since his arrest nearly one year ago, is remorseful over his involvement with Fresques, defense attorney Rudy Bautista said after Friday's hearing.

"He realizes his involvement after the fact, but he was absolutely scared for his life," Bautista said. "The other individual had a gun, so he went along with it."


Twitter: @Marissa_Jae






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