By Conrad Dudderar
A Yukon man who was high on PCP when he shot two roommates, killing one of them, has been sentenced to 40 years in prison.
Patrick Allen Matthews, 26, entered a “blind” plea Sept. 26 at an hour-long sentencing hearing in Canadian County District Court.
Matthews was charged Jan. 7, 2021, with first-degree murder and assault and battery with a deadly weapon in connection with a triple-shooting at a home near Britton and Mustang roads in north Yukon.
Matthews used a pistol to shoot to death Alfredo Vera, 24; and injure Jhonnatan Gonzalez-Leal, 34, before turning the gun on himself. The 2015 Mustang High School graduate lived at the house with both victims.
Matthews pleaded guilty to both felony counts. There was no negotiated plea agreement, and sentencing was left up to Canadian County District Judge Jack D. McCurdy II.
Judge McCurdy sentenced Matthews to 40 years in state Department of Corrections’ custody after prosecutors amended count one to second-degree murder.
McCurdy then sentenced Matthews to 25 years on count two, assault and battery with a deadly weapon. Both sentences will run concurrently.
Second-degree murder carries a penalty of 10 years to life in prison. Assault and battery with a deadly weapon is punishable by up to life in prison.
Prosecutors John Salmon and Justin Kemp called one witness and read four victim’s impact statements at the sentencing hearing. Defense attorney David Ogle called one witness and defendant Matthews made a statement in court.
Matthews claimed to have “no memory” of the shootings after consuming a large quantity of the hallucinogenic drug LSD, court documents show.
“Mr. Matthews is a good person who simply finds himself in a horrible situation,” according to a sentencing memorandum filed Sept. 21 by the defendant’s attorney. “(I)f he could, Mr. Matthews would do anything to change the significant harm he caused.
“His behavior cannot be excused, but hopefully it can be somewhat explained and maybe someday some good can come from this horrific event.”
Matthews has accepted responsibility for his actions in this matter, his attorney wrote.
“Such behavior is an aberration to his life’s history,” the memo reads. “He appreciates that his choices led to the injury of his friend and the death of another friend.
“He has regrets that cannot be put into words. If miracles were possible, he would change places with Alfredo Vega in an instant. He ponders why God allowed him to live through the horrible day. He believes it is his life that should have been lost, not his friend’s.”
In an interview for a psychological report filed in district court, Matthews told a forensic psychologist he had “no ill will” toward either of his roommates and “no memory” of retrieving his gun, shooting the victims or shooting himself.
He reported the cause was “strictly intoxication from drugs” and he expressed regret for his actions.
Attorney Ogle had asked Judge McCurdy to sentence Matthews to 15 years in prison, saying “that is more than sufficient, but not greater than necessary to ensure the goals of punishment and sentencing are satisfied.”
Oklahoma City Police responded about 6 p.m. Dec. 19, 2020, after shots were fired in the 9700 block of High Noon Road north of Yukon.
Matthews and Gonzalez-Leal decided to ingest LSD (“acid”) late that afternoon, the sentencing memo shows.
A female 911 caller told police she had been in another room with her boyfriend, Vera, when they heard a gunshot. While on the phone with 911, she tried to render aid to Gonzalez-Leal.
While doing so, she heard a second shot and saw Vera drop to the ground.
Gonzalez-Leal survived a gunshot wound to the chest. Vera died from a shot to the head.
After firing the second shot, Matthews dropped the firearm and began throwing items in the kitchen.
Vera’s girlfriend then grabbed the gun from the floor and exited the home knowing that police officers were arriving. She placed the gun in the lawn and sought refuge with officers on the scene.
Matthews exited the house and picked up the pistol from the lawn, placing the barrel under his chin and pulling the trigger.
He was bleeding heavily from the face and jaw as he began walking toward the street when he was taken into custody.
Matthews was admitted at a local hospital where he remained for 30 days, the first 10 days in the intensive care unit. He had six surgeries and nine blood transfusions.
The self-inflicted gunshot wound broke Matthews’ jaw while destroying his palate and left eye.
After being released from the hospital Jan. 18, 2021, he was transferred to the Canadian County Jail in El Reno.
Now a convicted murderer, Matthews is headed to state prison to serve his sentence.