Man sentenced to 181 years in prison for killing 3 in Pasadena shooting rampage


A Los Angeles County Superior Court judge sentenced a man Wednesday to 181 years to life in state prison for killing his live-in girlfriend, her father and a man who rushed to the victims’ aid during a shooting rampage in Pasadena.

The lengthy prison term for John Izeal Smith, 47, came after he pleaded guilty in December to two counts of first-degree murder and one count each of second-degree murder, attempted murder and assaulting a peace officer, according to the Los Angeles County district attorney’s office.

Prosecutors said that in July 2014, Smith got into a fight with Maria Aguiar, 59, identified as his girlfriend. He grabbed an assault rifle and shot her father, Luis Aguiar, 91, who later died.


Maria Aguiar fled from the home and was gunned down outside.

Next, Smith barricaded himself in a home along North Summit Avenue in Pasadena, called police and then began shooting at several people.

A police officer arrived, saw the woman on the sidewalk and tried to help her when Smith tried to spray him with gunfire.

Jose Hernandez Iribe, 31, a neighbor who has been described as a good Samaritan, ran toward the violence, only to be struck by Smith’s gunfire.

The massacre shocked the blue-collar neighborhood, where buildings were scarred by bullets.

In a news conference shortly after the shootings, Diane Marin, the emergency operator who fielded Smith’s call, recounted the accused gunman’s first words to her.

“He said, ‘I killed someone,’ ” Marin recalled. She spoke with Smith for about 20 minutes and was joined by a crisis negotiator. The man eventually surrendered to Pasadena SWAT officers.


Pasadena Police Chief Phillip L. Sanchez later said Smith had two assault rifles and one semiautomatic pistol. All of the weapons were purchased legally, he said.

Twitter: @MattHjourno