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O.C. woman who killed husband, shot son gets 40 years to life

June 20, 2013|By Rick Rojas

An Orange County woman convicted of fatally shooting her husband and attempting to kill her two sons — then 16 and 9 years old — after she had been diagnosed with cancer was sentenced Thursday to 40 years to life in prison, prosecutors said.

Annamaria Magno Gana, 43, had been found guilty by a jury in April of one felony count of special circumstances murder for lying in wait and two felony counts of attempted murder, according to a statement from the Orange County district attorney's office.

On May 8, 2011, Gana fired a gun at the ceiling of her bedroom at the family's home in the unincorporated area of Tustin Ranch, prosecutors said. Her husband, Antonio Potenciano Gana, 72, and their 16-year-old son ran into the room.

Gana, according to prosecutors, pointed the gun at her husband. "Now," she said, then fired, shooting him in the chest.

She then shot at her son as he tried to run out of the room. He was hit in the arm but got out of the house and called 911 on his cellphone, prosecutors said.

Her 9-year-old son, who saw his mother with the gun, was able to wrestle the weapon out of his mother's hands and take it outside.

Orange County sheriff's deputies arrested Gana at the scene.

Prosecutors argued that Gana, after receiving the cancer diagnosis, "selfishly decided to murder her family because she believed that they couldn't live without her if she died and that if she was going to die, then they should all 'go together.' "

As part of the sentencing procedings, several relatives made statements to the court, some were written and others were delivered in person.

Gana's older son gave a tearful statement, prosecutors said, in which he told his mother he loved her and misses his father. 

Two children of Antonio Gana from a previous relationship also spoke.

"Losing a father is inevitable," said daughter Carmelia Gana, "but losing him in this manner is unbearable."

Gana's son Jose said: "My brothers not only lost their father, they lost everything they had: a home, a family and the life they once had. From here we can all try to start to move on with hope for forgiveness, peace and love in our hearts.

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Twitter: @rar

rick.rojas@latimes.com

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