Salt Lake City man accused of killing one, injuring another in shooting spree will plead
A Salt Lake City man accused of shooting up a city block, killing one man and injuring another, is expected to strike a plea deal that would send him to prison for life with the possibility of parole.
Michael Eugene Vigil, 36, was charged in 3rd District Court with aggravated murder, attempted aggravated murder and being a restricted person in possession of a firearm.
On Wednesday, Vigil waived his right to a preliminary hearing, at which prosecutors would have laid out their evidence in the case to prove probable cause for a trial. Vigil told Judge Ann Boyden he intends to plead guilty to the aggravated and attempted aggravated murder charges, both first-degree felonies punishable by up to life in prison.
Vigil was arrested in July after he allegedly opened fire outside his parents' home, unloading at least 10 shots across a city block.
When police arrived, Antonio David Vasquez, 33, was found dead in the yard with a gunshot wound to the head. Lee Norton Otero, who had been visiting the family at home near 450 N. Grant St., was shot in the chest and arm.
Police said Vigil chased Otero down the block, shooting.
The bloody aftermath left an 8-year-old boy in a nearby car grazed by a bullet, several 9 mm shell casings in the yard and bullet holes in cars and buildings from 400 to 500 North, according to court documents.
Prosecutors were prepared Wednesday to call several eyewitnesses to testify and use the defendant's own jailhouse confession as evidence.
The announcement of Vigil's intention to plead guilty was met with audible shock from the courtroom gallery, where victims' family members gasped and Vigil's family members began to weep.
Several family members from both sides have written letters to the court either condemning or defending Vigil.
No motive has been specified in the shooting, and prosecutors on Wednesday declined to elaborate on the specifics of the plea.
Vigil, who has previous convictions for drug possession, assault and other charges, will be arraigned Feb. 25.