Three people were sentenced Friday for their involvement in a shooting that killed a 16-year-old boy in 2009. Friends of the victims and shooter gave impact statements in court.
Oscar LaJoie, 31, the shooter, was sentenced to 48 years with 20 suspended for second-degree murder and two counts of assault. Chad Zurfluh was sentenced to eight years with four suspended for criminally negligent homicide, burglary and two charges of assault. Jaeleen Zurfluh, who drove the two to and from the shooting, was sentenced to 24 months with 15 suspended.
In March 2009, teens started fighting at a warehouse party. Investigators say Chad Zurfluh left the party to get backup. He returned with LaJoie, who had a gun.
"He said Chad wanted to go in and fight and Oscar said his purpose in shooting the handle off the door was to keep Chad from going into the warehouse," said Detective Pamela Perrenoud.
Lajoie fired eight shots through the warehouse door, killing 16-year-old Colton Crow, and injuring two others inside.
"He always had a tremendous heart and wanted to help somebody else out," said LaJoie's friend, Cory Gove.
It wasn't even his fight, but friends say LaJoie tends to be overly protective, and never thought the random shots would hit or kill someone.
"I just want to say how sorry we are to the family who has lost their son and to the others who were injured. I can't imagine what shock and horror you went through," said Elaine Garcia, LaJoie's mother.
The two other victims, Alexander Hilden and Robert Lee, have recovered from the shooting, but with so much emotion, Lee had only a few words to share.
"What you did will have some consequences… you have a long time to think about that," Lee said.
Crow's friends, now high school seniors, say it hurts to know Colton won't walk across the stage with them at graduation.
"It's too bad we couldn't finish growing up together. We were close, and I loved him like a brother," said Sean Stallard.
They remember Crow for his perfect hair; his love for food, 'Call of Duty,' snowmachining, and his goofy laugh.
To his family, Colton was a free spirit, who helped his brothers and sister grow and learn.
"Colton helped me to become the parent that I am. He was my protector, and losing him has only made me stronger and more aware of what people are capable of," said Margie Crow, Colton's mother.
More than two dozen people testified in support of LaJoie or in memory of Crow, with both sides wishing it didn't turn out this way.