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VICTIM’S PARENTS WANT JUSTICE SERVED

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Richard Matthews was born Nov. 12, 1969, in Germany. Twenty-one years after his birth, his parents buried him in the Roy Cemetery.

The lives of Clifford and Gisela Matthews had changed forever, and they still don't understand why Richard had to die, the victim of a homicide.Matthews' former roommate, Doug Luna, has admitted shooting Matthews seven times in the back near the top of the North Ogden Divide road during the late night of Aug. 9 or the early morning hours of Aug. 10. Luna was charged with first degree felony murder, and he likely will be sentenced to life in prison next Thursday in 2nd District Court.

The victim's parents don't understand why Luna wasn't charged with capital murder. They feel he deserves the death penalty. Only then, in their minds, will justice be served.

Reflecting on the life of their dead son while watching home movies, Mrs. Matthews recalled that Richard, her youngest child, was a gentle and affectionate little boy.

Mrs. Matthews said Richard did well in high school, and his test scores were good enough that military personnel offered him a chance to be a candidate for officer's training. But she said her son wasn't interested.

She said Richard told her, "Mom, they can blow the world up without me."

Mr. Matthews said he wanted Richard to go to college, but his son wasn't ready. So he told Richard to move out of the house and learn responsibility by living on his own. He says now that that was a mistake, because his son soon became friends with Luna and eventually moved in with the killer.

Neither Mr. or Mrs. Matthews knew Luna, and the first time they saw him was during his arraignment in 2nd Circuit Court in August.

Both are disappointed that Weber County Attorney Reed Richards didn't file capital murder charges against the 21-year-old defendant.

"I wished they would hand him (Luna) over to us," said Mrs. Matthews. "Why should our baby be in the cemetery while he (Luna) gets out and watches TV, eats three meals a day? I feel cheated. Richard never hurt anybody his whole life.

"All I feel is hate for him, contempt," added Mr. Matthews. "It's destroyed our lives. Something valuable has been taken from us. Our house feels empty now."

Mr. Matthews said that Richard was a trusting person and that's probably what got him killed. "He (Richard) ran into the wrong person," Mr. Matthews said, while holding and rubbing his face with his hand. "Bad luck."