TWIN FALLS — A Twin Falls man who threatened to kill his ex-girlfriend’s family and shot into an empty car after a custody dispute on Father’s Day was sentenced Tuesday to up to 20 years in prison.
Kevin Duran, 28, pleaded guilty to one count of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. Prosecutors say Duran has known white supremacist ties and a violent criminal history. They recommended he spend 10 to 20 years in prison, and the judge agreed.
Duran was convicted of showing up to his ex-girlfriend’s home with a gun, attempting to break in and shooting at her new boyfriend’s car outside. Earlier in the day, Duran had threatened to kill everyone inside the residence, police said. His children were also in the house at the time.
“I’m going to kill him … my word white power white race I promise and very sorry,” Duran wrote in one text message sent to his ex-girlfriend’s mother, referring to his former girlfriend’s current boyfriend. “I will pull the trigger I hope he doez.”
Tearful victim testimonies from Duran’s ex-girlfriend, her boyfriend and her mother described a long history of violent and abusive behavior by Duran leading up to the incident.
His former girlfriend told the court that Duran had “always had really bad anger and jealousy issues” while they were together and after their relationship ended, resulting in years of physical and emotional abuse.
“This time, I’m done,” she said. “I’m sticking up for myself and stopping the abuse.”
Duran was initially charged with four counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, one count of unlawful possession of a weapon by a convicted felon, and one count of malicious injury to property, all felonies. As part of the guilty plea, the prosecutor’s office dismissed five of those six charges.
In a statement to Senior District Judge Cheri Copsey, Duran said he never intended to harm anybody that day.
“All I was trying to do was go get my kids,” he said. “When another man tells you you can’t see your kids or have your kids, I’m sure another man would get mad.”
“Another man who cared about his children, as opposed to his own desires, would not have put his children through this incident,” Copsey responded. “Another man would have gone about it in a civilized way.”
Before delivering the sentence, Copsey read Duran’s criminal history out loud to the courtroom, highlighting his participation in a three-on-one attack on another inmate while incarcerated and previous charges of child endangerment.
She rejected defense attorney George Essma’s suggestion that alcohol had been a driving factor in the June incident.
“Whatever is going on with you and your white power and all the other stuff you were spouting, it has nothing to do with alcohol,” Copsey said.
Duran will serve a minimum of 10 years in prison, with a maximum sentence of 20.