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Road rage shooter that killed 6-year-old Aiden Leos sentenced to 40 years to life in prison

Man who killed 6-year-old in road rage shooting sentenced to 40 years to life in prison
Man who killed 6-year-old in road rage shooting sentenced to 40 years to life in prison 02:38

The Costa Mesa man who shot and killed a 6-year-old boy during a 2021 road rage incident was sentenced to 40 years to life in prison Friday morning.

Marcus Anthony Eriz, 26, shot at the car that 6-year-old Aiden Leos' mother was driving following a car-to-car confrontation on the 55 freeway in the city of Orange.

Aiden was riding in the backseat, on his way to kindergarten, when Eriz fired at his mother's car. The boy died after a bullet struck him in the chest. 

After a manhunt that lasted more than two weeks, and included a $500,000 reward, Eriz and his girlfriend Wynne Lee were arrested outside their Costa Mesa apartment in connection to the shooting. They were linked to the vehicle and the firearm used in the shooting. Eriz was the shooter and Lee was the driver.

Eriz was charged with one count of murder and the discharging of a gun at an inhabited dwelling. In January, a jury found the 26-year-old guilty of second-degree murder.

During Friday's sentencing hearing, Eriz issued an emotional apology to Aiden's mother and family, referring to the boy as "a son, a little brother and a friend to others," as well as "truly one of God's little angels."

"I am so sorry for ever hurting him, and the pain he went through because of me," Eriz said.

Orange County Superior Court Judge Richard King acknowledged Eriz's apology and said he considered the defendant's "childhood trauma" as well as his age at the time of the shooting, but he said he couldn't see how any of that would change his mind about exercising his discretion to not add 25 years to life to his sentence for using the gun in the attack, as the defense had requested.

"I just cannot draw a connection between childhood trauma ... as well as his age," King said. The judge noted Eriz "did not commit any crimes till this particular day." 

The judge also noted that "there was no legal justification being provoked other than, 'I'm going to get back at her.'"

Lee was charged with being an accessory after the fact and faced a misdemeanor count of having a concealed firearm. She is awaiting trial.

Related: Aiden Leos, 6-Year-Old Victim Of 55 Freeway Road Rage Shooting In Orange, Laid To Rest

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