Nhu Nguyen gets 2.5 years for fatally shooting friend at Savin Hill

Nhu Nguyen pleaded guilty to manslaughter and firearm charges yesterday for the shooting death of 19-year-old Derek Matulina on the Savin Hill MBTA station platform last year.

Although Judge Jeffrey Locke described the sentence he was about to hand down as “lenient,” he agreed to the request of prosecutors and a defense attorney to sentence a Dorchester man to two and a half years in jail for fatally shooting a teen last year.

Nhu Nguyen, 20, pleaded guilty yesterday to charges including manslaughter during a plea hearing at Suffolk Superior Court. Nguyen admitted to fatally shooting his friend, 19-year-old Derek Matulina, during a fight at the Savin Hill MBTA station last May.

Matulina’s father Robert said that he wanted to see Nguyen serve a longer sentence.

“This is the best we could do,” Robert Matulina said. “It’s a tough pill to swallow.”

Deirdre Murphy, Matulina’s mother, gave a tearful impact statement during the hearing.

“The court has allowed you to plead guilty to manslaughter and walk away from murder,” she said. “But you know and I know murder is what happened on that Savin Hill platform.”

If the case went to trial, prosecutors would have to prove that Nguyen used excessive force for self-defense. Assistant District Attorney Holly Broadbent said the recommended sentence takes into account that Nguyen had no adult convictions and his age.

“It’s lenient,” said Locke, “but it does seem to fully factor in all of the facts and circumstances surrounding this event.”

Nguyen and Matulina were friends who would sell marijuana together, Broadbent said.

The two crossed paths at the T station last May and an argument broke out over a debt from a transaction. Matulina tried to get Nguyen to fight him, but Nguyen refused and flashed a gun. While walking toward the station platform, Nguyen turned his back and that’s when Matulina repeatedly hit him in the head and back with a padlock tied to a bandanna.

Nguyen had nowhere to run, with Matulina’s friends blocking the station’s exit and electrified tracks on either side of the platform, lawyers for both sides said.

That’s when he shot Matulina once in the chest.

Police found Nguyen at his father’s house in Maine days after the shooting.

The sentence

The plea agreement details:
   
His concurrent sentences on manslaughter and gun charges will net him two and a half years in a county jail.
   
He faced more than 25 years in state prison if found guilty of the manslaughter, gun and ammunition charges.
   
He was ordered to stay away from the victim’s family, earn his GED and undergo random drug testing.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Woman dies when run over by bus at…

A woman at the Burning Man arts and culture festival in the Nevada desert died on Thursday when she was run over by a bus carrying participants.

National

Texas parents sue day care center for duct…

By Marice RichterDALLAS (Reuters) - A Texas couple has filed a lawsuit against the owners of a Fort Worth-area day care center seeking $1 million…

National

Santa Fe city council votes to decriminalize marijuana

By Joseph KolbALBUQUERQUE N.M. (Reuters) - Santa Fe on Wednesday became the latest U.S. city to decriminalize small amounts of marijuana, with lawmakers in the…

International

Egypt queries Mursi over documents "leaked" to Al…

CAIRO (Reuters) - Egypt is investigating jailed ex-president Mohamed Mursi in connection with documents that judicial investigators say were leaked to the Qatar-based Al Jazeera…

Going Out

'Friends' coffeehouse Central Perk coming to NYC —…

"Friends" is coming back for a one-off special: "The One with the Free Coffee." Warner Bros. is bringing a pop-up replica of Central Perk, the…

Movies

Interview: 'As Above, So Below' directors: 5 ways…

The fraternal directors of the found footage horror "As Above, So Below" dish on the best ways to frighten the bejesus out of audiences.

Movies

Criterion's new Jacques Demy box mixes the light…

Jacques Demy, the most effervescent of French New Wave filmmakers, gets a Criterion box all to himself, with classics like "The Umbrellas of Cherbourg."

Entertainment

Comedian Joan Rivers, 81, rushed to New York…

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Acerbic comedian and fashion critic Joan Rivers was rushed to Mount Sinai Hospital in New York on Thursday after she reportedly…

NFL

3 things we learned in the Giants preseason…

The final score didn’t matter — a 16-13 win by the Giants — but it would’ve been nice to finally see Big Blue’s new-look offense get on track.

NFL

NFL Power Rankings: Seahawks, Broncos, Patriots, 49ers start…

NFL Power Rankings: Seahawks, Broncos, Patriots start at top

U.S. Soccer

5 facts about new England captain Wayne Rooney

Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney was named as the new England captain by coach Roy Hodgson on Thursday.

NFL

Jets vs. Eagles: 3 things to watch

A win on Thursday night at the Eagles would give the Jets a 3-1 record and just their second winning preseason under head coach Rex Ryan.

Style

Trend: White hot on the 2014 Emmy's red…

White was one of the big trends on the Emmy's red carpet.

Food

Recipe: Samuel Adams beer-marinated grilled shrimp

Summer calls for two things: a cold beer and light food. Sam Adams' Latitude 48 IPA fairly bursts with citrus notes, making it an ideal marinade…

Wellbeing

4 healthy ingredient swaps to make your meals…

When it comes to eating well, everyone knows they could be doing better. But cooking in an apartment on a busy schedule is a recipe…

Wellbeing

Heart trumps brain when it comes to movies…

When you need a good cry, do you reach for the movie that’s “based on a true story”? Science says you’re giving your brain far…