MARTINEZ -- A San Francisco man sentenced to prison Friday said he wasn't thinking clearly when he killed a romantic rival outside a Pittsburg restaurant more than six years ago.
"I didn't think about all the pain I would cause by my actions. Something inside me snapped," said Erik Yashiro Smith, who gunned down 29-year-old Pittsburg electrician Luis Perez outside Nation's Giant Hamburgers on Sept. 26, 2006.
Smith, 32, was sentenced Friday to 43 years and four months in state prison as part of a plea deal. He pleaded guilty last week to voluntary manslaughter for killing Perez, whom Smith had suspected was seeing his wife again after a previous affair.
He also pleaded guilty to setting fire to the SUV of Perez's sister and shooting up two vehicles in her neighborhood two days before the killing, and for trying to escape from County Jail once he was charged with murder.
David Perez described his brother as an honest, hardworking father of a young girl who didn't deserve to die in an ambush.
"There's so many women out there," David Perez said. "You don't need to kill for one."
Blanca Hernandez told the court she stepped aside when Smith's wife interfered in her marriage to Perez.
"She was supposed to make him happy. Instead, she instigated his murder, which you committed," Hernandez said. "I hope you rot in hell, that's all I have to say."
Smith apologized to the Perez family, his own, and the family of his friend Marcell Thatcher, who was sentenced to 25 years to life in 2009 for driving Perez from the restaurant after the fatal shooting.
"I want to be a better person," Smith said. "I pray every day for my family, for the wrong things I've done."
In her own apology to the Perez family, Smith's mother, Kay Dorsey, said Smith never got over the death of his 4-month-old son.
"All he wanted to do was marry a good woman and have children, and now that's been taken away from him," Dorsey said. "I'm 60 years old. I'm not going to be alive when he gets home, and that's OK.
"This is the saddest day of my life, and I'm sure it is for you, too," she told Perez's relatives.
Contact Malaika Fraley at 925-234-1684. Follow her at Twitter.com/malaikafraley.