A South Hill man who killed his girlfriend by setting her ablaze last year was sentenced Friday to 25 years in prison.
Angel Reyes, 39, previously pleaded guilty to first-degree murder in the death of Maria Lucia Bazan, who went by Lucy.
Pierce County prosecutors said Reyes doused Bazan with gasoline on May 1, 2014, and ignited the fuel after an argument over whether she’d reconnected with an old boyfriend.
Bazan, 34, died about three weeks later.
“The case probably reinforces more strongly than any other the reason the we take domestic violence so seriously,” Superior Court Judge Garold Johnson said in accepting the 300-month sentence worked out between prosecutors and Reyes’ defense team.
“If we don’t take action early, this is what happens. The destruction is immeasurable.”
Bazan was at the center of a large extended family, and more than two dozen relatives and friends attended the sentencing hearing, most wearing T-shirts emblazoned with a photograph of the smiling Bazan and the words, “Justice for Lucy.”
She left behind a 14-year-old son.
“She was kind of the center of the family, the go-to person,” her niece’s husband, who gave his name only as Anselmo, said outside court.
Reyes was contrite, saying he knows he’s caused terrible pain to Bazan’s family and his own.
“I wish I could trade my life for Ms. Bazan’s,” he told Johnson before the sentence was handed down. “She was a really good woman and a good mother.
“I’m so very sorry.”