A Visalia man who shot and killed his girlfriend with an illegally modified AR-15 faces life in prison after a Tulare County jury found him guilty of second-degree murder on Tuesday.
The conviction of Anthony David Martin, 23, included a special allegation of using a firearm in the murder. The jury also returned a guilty verdict for possession of an assault weapon.
Choked Victim During Argument, Later Returned to Kill Her
According to court records, Martin and his girlfriend of two years argued while driving to her Visalia house in the early morning on Oct. 5, 2019. During the argument, he threatened and choked her. Deciding that the relationship was over, the girlfriend gathered up Martin’s belongings and dropped them on the front porch of his residence.
But, after she returned home, Martin entered the house and fired four shots, killing her — even though her roommate was there at the time.
Visalia police officers later found the AR-15 in Martin’s storage locker. Using cell phone pings, the officers then tracked Martin to his work in downtown Visalia, where he sat in his car eating breakfast.
Martin’s sentencing is scheduled for May 19.
Tulare County senior deputy district attorney Adam Clare prosecuted the case, which was investigated by Visalia PD.
Don’t Be a Victim of Domestic Violence
If you are the victim of domestic abuse, or you know someone who is, help is available. In Fresno County, call the Marjaree Mason Center, (559) 233-4357. In all other locations, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline, (800) 799-7233. There will be someone there to help you regardless of the day or time.