50 years for Fatal Lawn Mower Shooting

By: The Associated Press Email
By: The Associated Press Email

A retired Iowa public official has been sentenced to 50 years in prison for fatally shooting his longtime girlfriend while she rode a lawn mower behind their eastern Iowa home.

72-year-old Thomas Hansen was sentenced Friday.

The former Iowa City Fire Department official and Johnson County emergency management director will serve at least 35 years before he is eligible for parole.

Jurors convicted Hansen in November of second-degree murder in the May 2011 death of Sharon Gerot.

Hansen said the couple had been arguing and the bullet that struck her in the head was only meant to scare her.

Hansen's sentence includes an order to pay $150,000 to Gerot's estate.

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