Omar Ayala, Francisco Cruz, and Angel Perez were teens when they went to an illegal street race in 2007, where authorities said they planned a carjacking.
And when the robbery went bad they each fired handguns at a group of people, fatally wounding Nick Gazzano, the father of a 13-year-old girl.
The three men, all 20 years old, were sentenced Tuesday to life in prison with the possibility of parole after 24 years by District Judge Jackie Glass.
“You didn’t care what you were shooting at and who you were shooting at. Quite honestly, the fact that only one person died on this night is kind of amazing to me. This was senseless,” Glass said.
In January, a Clark County jury convicted the three men of second-degree murder and other felonies.
At the sentencing, all three apologized to the victim’s family, including Ayala, who fired the fatal shot.
“I never meant to kill him (Gazzano) or hurt anybody like that,” Ayala said.
Defense attorneys asked the judge to take into consideration the youth of the defendants and that they were drunk at the time of the shooting.
Glass said it was in society’s best interest that the three be locked up to prevent them from doing “something stupid and senseless like this again.”
Afterward, prosecutor Richard Scow said the sentence was appropriate. “They will be in prison for a long time to think about what happened,” Scow said.
Authorities said Ayala, Perez, and Cruz, attempted to carjack Michael Pira at an illegal street race at Sunset Road and Valley View Boulevard in the early hours of Feb. 2, 2007.
Pira escaped in his car to a group of nearby friends. The three defendants opened fire with handguns in that direction, striking Gazzano.
The trio also was found guilty of attempted murder, attempted robbery, conspiracy to commit robbery, and discharging a firearm from a motor vehicle.
The jury acquitted a fourth co-defendant Jose Covarrubias of all the charges. The three defendants got into a vehicle driven by Covarrubias to leave the scene.
During the trial’s closing arguments, Covarrubias’ defense attorney, Michael Sanft, argued his client arrived after the gunfire erupted and didn’t know about the attempted robbery.