Man Who Shot Teen At Party Receives 48-Year Sentence

More than two years after a teen was shot and killed at a party, the man responsible was sentenced to 48 years in prison.

Joshua Abeyta, 18, was fighting with 16-year-old Kenny Lazo when police say Arien Rivas, then 19, walked up and shot Abeyta three or four times. Rivas and Lazo then left the scene together. Lazo was later arrested as an accessory to the crime.

The shooting took place at the Meadowbrook mobile home community in east Pueblo County.

Rivas, 21, was convicted in August to second-degree murder. He was arrested two years ago on first-degree murder charges, but his legal team was able to get the charge reduced to second-degree murder due to Rivas being drunk at the time of the shooting. Rivas' lawyers convinced the judge that in his intoxicated state, it was unlikely he could have formed the conscious intent to kill.

During the sentencing, the judge pointed out that Abeyta was defenseless when he was shot, and referred to the shooting as an "execution."

Rivas was given credit for the 800 days he has spent in jail.