KINGMAN, Ariz. — Sentence was imposed Friday for a man who drove from Vilas, N.C., to Arizona in June to confess that he killed a woman in Bullhead City 17 years ago.
Mohave County Superior Court Judge Rick Williams sentenced Matthew Gibson, 55, to 10½ years in prison.
The punishment was prescribed in a plea agreement convicting Gibson of second-degree murder in the July 1997 death of Barbara Brown, 38.
Prosecutor Bob Moon said Gibson had not been considered a suspect and might never have been charged had he not turned himself in.
“For years now I have weeped over this and it has been heavy on my soul,” Gibson said in a pre-sentence report. “At the time of the crime I had no intention to take a life, but it did happen and I as a man will accept my punishment.”
Moon said Gibson told police that he struck Brown in the head with a heavy flashlight during a heated argument after she refused to leave his travel trailer.
He said Brown died of blunt force trauma and Gibson dumped her body where it was discovered near Rotary Park by the Colorado River.