San Antonio man sentenced to life in prison for Planet Fitness killing

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by KENS 5 staff

khou.com

Posted on July 19, 2013 at 8:48 AM

SAN ANTONIO -- Life in prison -- that's just part of the sentence that a judge handed down to a man who, in a jealous rage, gun-down two people.

It's been a long road to recovery for the surviving victim, Maggie McCombs, 25. The young man who was with her that night didn't survive.

Both families have since grown closer together and were happy with Thursday's sentencing.

"Bring Masaki up here," Judge Angus McGinty said.

McGinty gave Yu Masaki 20 years for aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and life in prison for the murder of 31-year-old Juan Escamilla.

McCombs is now a quadriplegic. Family and friends embraced her soon after the sentencing.

"Obviously no sentence is going to bring my brother back," said Julio Escamilla, the deceased's brother. Masaki shot Escamilla to death after seeing him walk McCombs to her car.

"He was a wonderful person -- a gentle soul. He's dearly missed," Escamilla said.

The deadly shooting happened January 8, 2012. That night, Juan was escorting McCombs to her car after leaving a local gym on 410 and McCullough. Masaki admitted to chasing both of them down with a gun.

Police said McCombs had been worried for her safety, after she refused Masaki's advances.

"The suspect was a want-to--be boyfriend, who the woman was not interested in," SAPD Chief William McManus said.

Escamilla's family has supported McCombs since the tragedy. The family also had to 'stay strong' for Escamilla's 11-year-old son, Jordan.

"(We're) trying to find peace within our hearts," the victim's brother admitted.

During the trial, a forensic psychiatrist who evaluated Masaki said he suffered from depression and an autistic disorder.

Masaki said nothing after Judge McGinty sentenced him.

After more than a year of trying to come to terms with Masaki's actions, Escamilla said it all ended Thursday.

"The only prisoner in all of this, he said, is Yu Masaki.

"We move forward. He will no longer be given any more thought. He will be serving time," Escamilla said.

Masaki will have to pay a $20,000 fine. Masaki also faces deportation since he is a citizen of Japan.

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