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Herrera-Torres sentenced to 25 years for killing girlfriend

Jose Raul Herrera-Torres

Jose Herrera-Torres was sentenced to 25-and-a-half years in prison for stabbing his girlfriend to death at their Long Prairie home last July.

Judge Daniel Benson handed down the 306-month sentence in Todd County District Court on June 6. Herrera-Torres, who was convicted of second-degree intentional murder last November, was credited for the 312 days he's spent in jail while the case proceeded.

He was also ordered to pay $7,500 in restitution and supply DNA samples to authorities.

Herrera-Torres' girlfriend, Dominga Mejia Guerrero, was found dead in the couple's home on July 27, 2017, by another person who lived in the house. The medical examiner documented five wounds to Guerrero's face and neck area.

The death prompted a multi-county manhunt for Herrera-Torres, who had fled the scene. Authorities caught up with him after he checked himself into a Long Prairie hospital with minor wounds.

During a three-day jury trial, Herrera-Torres testified that he acted in self defense after an argument spun out of control and Guerrero came at him, "swinging a knife."

The prosecution maintained that Guerrero's relationship with Herrera-Torres was crumbling and after several fights and arguments, she was looking for a new place to live. The prosecution argued that Herrera-Torres called Guerrero names, goaded her into using the knife and had it in his control when he stabbed her.

After two hours of deliberation, the jury returned a verdict of guilty of murder in the second degree, which contends that a person caused the death of someone else but without premeditation.

Herrera-Torres was ordered to report to the Minnesota correctional facility in St. Cloud on June 6.

Al Edenloff

Al Edenloff is the news and opinion page editor for the Echo Press. He was born in Alexandria and lived most of his childhood in Parkers Prairie. He graduated with honors from Moorhead State University with a degree in mass communications, print journalism. He interned at the Echo Press in the summer of 1983 and was hired a year later as a sports reporter. He also worked as a news reporter/photographer. Al is a four-time winner of the Minnesota Newspaper Association's Herman Roe Award, which honors excellence in editorial writing.  

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