GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. - A Mesa County judge has sentenced a 44-year-old Grand Junction man to 48 years in prison in the beating death last year of his girlfriend.
District Judge Valerie Robison handed down the maximum sentence against David Norman on Friday.
Norman had pleaded guilty last month to second-degree murder in the death of 49-year-old Kathy Fortner. Tourists found her body near Colorado National Monument outside Grand Junction last July 2.
The Grand Junction Daily Sentinel reports that the victim's family gasped with joy and applauded in court when the sentence was announced.