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Man accused of killing girlfriend in front of kids pleads guilty, sentenced to 50 years

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HOUSTON – A man accused of shooting and killing his girlfriend inside an SUV in front of her children last year pleaded guilty and was sentenced Wednesday.

Albee Lewis pleaded guilty to murder and was sentenced to 50 years in prison.

Officials said Lewis, 31, shot his girlfriend, Ashanti Hunter, on April 30, 2017, at the couple's apartment complex in north Harris County.

Investigators said Hunter, 32, and Lewis got into an argument and Hunter ran to the SUV to get away from Lewis. At some point, Lewis shot Hunter several times as she sat in the front passenger seat. 
Hunter's youngest child, who was sitting in the vehicle, was not injured, investigators said.

Hunter’s cousin, Myriane Rodrigues, said she was dropping off Hunter’s three children when they screamed that their mother and her boyfriend were fighting. 

"I ran by the police to get help, knocking on everybody's door. Nobody answered their doors," Rodrigues said. "I heard gunshots, and it was my cousin in my passenger’s seat." 

A detective from the Harris County Sheriff's Office said one of Hunter's children called 911 from an upstairs bedroom. 

Lewis left the scene and drove to a motel but turned himself in to police a short time later. 

VIDEO: Family speaks after guilty plea

Family Criminal Law Division Chief Carvana Cloud and the Hunter family discussed the outcome of the case Wednesday. 

"This verdict certainly cannot bring Ashante back, but we are proud to have achieved this verdict in order to give Ms. Wright and her family some closure as they begin to heal from the loss of this beloved woman," Cloud said.

"Now that I finally got a chance to see him... it's a little bitty weight off my shoulders. Because I took him in like my son," Hunter's mother, Devra Wright, said.

"He (Lewis) didn't look at me. I didn't see any pain; no remorse. I didn't feel like he had any remorse," Wright said. "I don't hate him, but I'm not ready to forgive him."

Wright said she is most concerned about her 4-year-old granddaughter because she lost both her parents -- her mom to the killing and her dad to prison.

Cloud also added that she and other groups will continue to work together to improve Harris County's coordinated response for victims of domestic violence.