Eric Coulter Found Guilty of Fatally Shooting Ex-Girlfriend With "Military-Style Assault Rifle"

Categories: Convicted
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MCSO
Eric Coulter
A Chandler man who claimed he "accidentally" shot his ex-girlfriend in the head with a rifle in 2011 was found guilty yesterday of manslaughter.

Eric Coulter, who was 18 at the time, killed his ex-girlfriend Monique Cota with what the Maricopa County Attorney's Office calls a "military-style assault rifle."

See also:
-Eric Coulter Claims He Accidentally Shot Former Girlfriend in the Face

According to court documents previously obtained by New Times, Cota was in killed in Coulter's bedroom in his parents' home at in Chandler shortly after 1 a.m. on October 15, 2011.

"It was an accident. I killed Monique. I killed Monique," Coulter told his father and sister after shooting Cota. "I shot her in the head. I'm going to jail."

Coulter ran from the house, and hid at a Motel 6 in Mesa, where his sister met up with him.

Coulter told his sister he was "inspecting the gun," described as an AR-15/M16 rifle, as he was trying to show Cota it was empty. Instead, Coulter said the gun discharged, and the bullet went into Cota's face.

In court documents, police said Coulter's explanation "[didn't] seem feasible."

In addition, police noted the turbulent relationship Coulter and Cota had.

Almost exactly a year before the shooting, both of them were jailed for domestic violence after getting into a fight with each other.

It just so happened that Cota had just gotten engaged to another guy two days before she was shot.

Cota had told her mother that she'd gotten engaged to the man, a childhood friend, and she was moving to California to go be with him.

A jury seemed to find this stuff to be too much to overcome, and convicted him on the manslaughter charge, although the jury convicted him of the lesser charge -- he was also facing a charge of second-degree murder.

Still Coulter faces a possible prison term of seven to 21 years at his April 26 sentencing, according to information from the Maricopa County Attorney's Office.

James King contributed to this post.


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6 comments
azmattyv2
azmattyv2

I knew Monique and the family for years. This was a murder in every sense if the word. He planned it and pulled the trigger. She was leaving him and he would not have it. Only idiots think guns go off by themselves. The jury should be ashamed of themselves. This dirtbag should never see the light of day. Rest in peace, Monique

azlefti
azlefti

Jest curious would this have been any less tragic or senseless if the  turd had used a single shot hunting rifle?

eric.nelson745
eric.nelson745 topcommenter

He bears an uncanny resemblance to the new improved ASU mascot. That said, "I shot her in the head. I'm going to jail." Well no shit, Sherlock.

bob_lablaw96
bob_lablaw96

@azlefti NO!  It would have had the same amount of sadness, and we would all be holding our heads wondering what to do.

In all of the mass shootings in our country, the common denominator has always been the mental state of the shooter.  When you take out the gangster thugs, and domestic violence stuff, we really do not have a lot of multiple murders.  All of them seem to be committed by crazies, and a variety of weapons are used.

We cannot get rid of stupid.  Nor can we legislate mental stability.  The anti gun movement is a flash in the pan, because they do not want to address real, common sense, solutions.  They just want to ban all guns.

Enforce the laws we have already, and there will be a lot fewer gun crimes in all categories!

eric.nelson745
eric.nelson745 topcommenter

Memo to: The Judge

Give this turd the max.

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