Christopher Morales pleads guilty to second-degree murder for New Year’s Day shooting

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SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KCAU) – A suspect involved in the Walker Street New Year’s Day shooting changed his plea to guilty Tuesday afternoon.

As part of a plea agreement, Christopher Morales pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and four counts of reckless use of a firearm. Fines were suspended. Also as part of the deal, he must serve 55 years with an obligation to serve 75% of the time.

Judge Duane Hoffmeyer said that it was one of Morales’ shots that killed 18-year-old Mia Kritis.

Christopher Morales was originally charged with first-degree murder, going armed with intent, and three counts of reckless use of a firearm in a shooting on New Year’s Day. Previously in January 2021, Christopher Morales pleaded not guilty to his charges.

Though the terms of his sentence have already been agreed on, Morales will be officially sentenced on June 30.

Read more on the Walker Street New Year’s Day Shooting 

On January 1, the Sioux City Police Department received reports of shots fired at a residence on South Walker Street. Officers determined multiple shots had been fired into the residence and found victims inside the residence, including Kritis, who had suffered a fatal gunshot wound

As a part of a plea agreement, Anthony Bauer, 18, pleaded guilty in early June to second-degree murder, reckless use of a firearm, and two counts of reckless use of a firearm. Carlos Morales, another suspect, had pleaded not guilty to his charges in February. Liliana Gutierrez, the alleged driver for the shooting suspects, also pleaded not guilty in February to the charges of three counts of reckless use of a firearm and intimidation of a dangerous weapon.

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