TAMPA — "Jealousy, rage and a gun were all chained together," a judge told Leonel Marquetti, 51, Friday before sentencing him to life in prison without parole for killing his ex-girlfriend's handyman.
About 30 family members of Marquetti's victim, Michael Hurlbutt, 41, hugged each other after the sentencing. Hurlbutt was shot to death March 25 in Plant City. Prosecutors said Marquetti wrongly assumed he was involved with Marquetti's ex-girlfriend.
Hurlbutt's father, James, called Marquetti "a coward, a weak, cruel murderer, who will die a coward's death."
Hillsborough County Circuit Judge Emmett Battles also sentenced Marquetti to maximum five-year terms on convictions of aggravated battery with a firearm and false imprisonment. "You are going to spend the rest of your life in prison," Battles said.
Marquetti had no reaction. Greg Hill, his public defender, told the family members his client believed that "no words, no apologies could take away the grief you are feeling."