21-Year-old found guilty of killing friend while going to get drugs

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By Alicia Barron By Alicia Barron

CHANDLER, Ariz. – A man has been found guilty of first-degree murder and attempted first-degree murder in connection with the shooting of two teens over two years ago.

Philip Montoya, 21, shot and killed his 19-year-old friend Xavier Garcia and tried to kill a 16-year-old girl who was driving them to pick up some marijuana on April 2, 2008.

A news release from the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office indicates Montoya was sitting behind the teen girl and Garcia when he asked her to pull over and he shot both of them multiple times.

The girl reportedly played dead until Montoya left and then ran to get help at a nearby home. The news release says Montoya thought both shooting victims were working for police.

The jury in this case deliberated for five hours after three weeks of testimony and determined Montoya was guilty on both charges. He is facing a life sentence with the possibility of parole or a natural life sentence plus 7 to 21 years on the attempted murder conviction.

Sentencing is scheduled for October 13.