A jury on Thursday found a Texas woman guilty of involuntary manslaughter in the fatal shooting of her boyfriend in 2018.
Gregoria Elizabeth Baez, 22, was charged with second-degree murder after she shot and killed her longtime boyfriend, 21-year-old Felix Florez of Manhattan, who was a Geary County correctional officer. However, Judge John Bosch told the jury it had the option of convicting Baez of the lesser charge, involuntary manslaughter.
Bosch read the verdict Thursday afternoon at the Riley County Courthouse after the jury deliberated for about four hours.
On Sept. 22, Baez and Florez were alone at their residence at 1420 Vista Lane. Baez testified in court Wednesday that Florez told her he was going to play a video game, and she teased him about it.
She said Florez unholstered his gun that he carried on him and pointed it at her, jokingly saying, “What did you say?” Baez said this sort of behavior was a common joke between the two, and in response, she pulled her own gun out.
In the process of doing so, Baez disengaged the grip safety on the firearm and shot Florez in the face. Florez later died at the hospital.
Baez said that while she had fired guns before at ranges with Florez, she was not very familiar or experienced with them.
She said she didn’t expect the gun to go off because she thought it was unloaded.
A sentencing hearing is scheduled for 2:30 p.m. Nov. 12.