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Man sentenced to more than 135 years to life in brother's shooting death

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Posted at 5:26 PM, Jul 08, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-08 20:26:20-04

VISTA, Calif. (CNS) - A man who inadvertently shot his brother to death during a fight at an Escondido bar was sentenced Thursday to more than 135 years to life in state prison.

Manuel Eliseo Martinez, 35, was convicted in late 2019 of murder, attempted murder and other charges stemming from the shooting death of his older brother, 35-year-old Antonio Martinez, at Pounders Sports Pub.

The Sept. 2018 shooting sparked after the brothers left the bar, got into a car and sped off, prompting a bar patron to chastise them for speeding, according to Escondido police.

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Hearing the angry shouts, the two siblings doubled back, got out of the vehicle and began assaulting the man who had yelled at them, police said.

At some point, Manuel Martinez took out a gun and fired two rounds, one of which struck his brother. Antonio Martinez died at a hospital, while another man who was shot was also hospitalized, but survived his injuries.

When police arrived in response to the gunfire, witnesses identified Manuel Martinez as the alleged shooter, police said. Martinez fled but was arrested following a foot chase and a brief struggle with officers.

At the time of the shooting, Martinez was a wanted suspect in three other violent crimes over the prior year, police said at the time of his arrest.