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Ex-Wyoming guard Luke Martinez pleads guilty to misdemeanor battery

Luke Martinez

On Monday, Wyoming senior guard Luke Martinez began serving a 45-day sentence in the Albany County Jail, after pleading guilty to misdemeanor battery charge stemming from a bar fight in late December.

The Casper Star-Tribune confirmed the news on Tuesday morning.

Martinez had originally been charged with felony aggravated assault after putting one man in the hospital with serious facial injuries. It was dropped to a misdemeanor after the victim requesting it, according to the Star-Tribune.

“Now that the legal process has been concluded, we are glad the incident has been resolved with a plea agreement that includes a reduced charge,” Wyoming athletic director Tom Burman said. “Life’s lessons are difficult sometimes, and hopefully we all learned from this one. This was an unfortunate incident that resulted from poor decisions by numerous parties, and Luke is paying the price for his. The fact that Luke is a test away from graduating is a positive step for him.

“We hope the victim can move forward with full recovery and wish him the best as well. The university regrets deeply that the incident occurred, and that it involved UW student-athletes. It does not represent acceptable behavior.”

During the altercation that took place outside a Laramie, Wyo. bar on Dec. 30, Martinez kicked Parfait Nayigihugu in the head while he was unconscious. That blow to the face caused multiple facial fractures. Martinez left the fight with a broken finger.

Martinez, at the time of the incident, was the Cowboys leading scorer at 14.5 points per game. Wyoming was 12-0 with the 6-foot-4 senior in the lineup. The Cowboys ended the season 20-14 (4-12 Mountain West Conference), losing to Western Michigan in the quarterfinal of the College Basketball Invitational.

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