Cameron Espitia, 31, who is being held on $3million bail, stands accused of shooting his wife in the back of an Uber during an argument.
Espitia, despite witnesses, is pleading ‘not guilty’, and told authorities that ‘he was drunk’ and doesn’t remember what happened.
The couple was leaving a wedding, both clearly intoxicated. The Uber driver told police that the couple had been arguing about whether or not to attend an after party, when Espitia shot his wife, Jennifer Morrison Espitia, 29.
The Daily Mail reports:
The driver described hearing a bang and seeing the woman slumped over. The couple had been arguing about whether to attend a wedding after-party, deputy King County prosecutor Jessica Berliner wrote in court papers.
‘The defendant decided he was going to “cut loose” at a wedding,’ Berliner wrote. ‘Despite the fact that he was armed with a loaded firearm, he consumed numerous alcoholic drinks and argued with his wife when she wanted him to go home instead of proceeding to the after-party.’
Cameron was flanked by two attorneys, Joseph Alvarado and Kevin McCabe, during his arraignment before Judge Sean O’Donnell in King County Superior Court. McCabe entered the plea on his behalf.
Cameron, a Coast Guard employee with no criminal history, spoke only to confirm his identity. He faces up to 23 years if convicted.
Relatives and friends of the couple packed the courtroom, but left without speaking to reporters. Jennifer’s sister cried out as the prosecutor recited the charge.
The Uber driver kept driving after the shooting because he feared for his life, police said. Eventually, he pulled over and Cameron got out. The driver then drove another block, before stopping and called 911.
Officers found Cameron nearby. He had apparently fallen in some bushes, his suit was dirty and he had dried blood on his shoulder, police said. He also had a handgun in an ankle holster, authorities said.
He told detectives he couldn’t remember what happened during the ride, but he repeatedly asked how his wife was doing, charging documents said.
Jennifer graduated from Mercer Island High School in Washington state and was on the rowing team at Saint Mary’s College in California, according to a college athletics biography.
She had won a community-service award for work as a peer educator at Planned Parenthood, working at a day care center and building homes in Mexico.
Jennifer had attended high school with the couple whose wedding the Espitias attended, police said.