28-year-old gets lengthy sentence for shooting man involved in a love triangle, officials say

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Tuesday, March 26, 2024
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HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- A 28-year-old man was sentenced to 55 years in prison for shooting a man to death in the parking lot of a club in Houston's southside in 2022, according to officials.

Luis Alejandro Valencia was convicted of murder and sentenced by a jury on Friday for shooting 29-year-old Erik Villeda, a husband and father of two, on Feb. 12, 2022.

The six-day murder trial ended with Valencia's lengthy sentence, which includes a $10,000 fine.

Investigators said Villeda and his wife were having problems before the shooting. Witnesses said Valencia told Villeda that he had been talking to the married man's wife.

According to testimony, Valencia tracked down Villeda and killed him after hearing the married couple was having issues.

The Houston Police Department said the shooting happened while Villeda was at a club in a shopping center in the 8500 block of the Gulf Freeway.

The Harris County District Attorney's Office reported that Valencia called Villeda to the vehicle and started shooting a 9mm semi-automatic pistol while sitting in an SUV.

Villeda was standing outside the bar and tried to run away, but Valencia emptied a 16-round magazine, according to officials.

The DA's office said Valencia shot Villeda four times in the back, killing him.

Attorneys noted that Valencia was wearing a cowboy hat and a face mask and took off after the shooting.

HPD investigators reviewed surveillance video from the bar and discovered the cowboy hat, which was left behind with Villeda's DNA on it.

On Feb. 13, 2022, Valencia was caught trying to go through the security at Bush Intercontinental Airport with two knives and 75 rounds of 9mm ammunition.

While in the Harris County Jail after the murder, Valencia was also charged with attempted escape for trying to dig his way out of the jail.