A 21-year-old man who fatally stabbed his 17-year-old ex-girlfriend at a South Gate high school and injured others who tried to intervene was sentenced Monday to more than 40 years to life in prison.

Abraham Lopez of South Gate had just ended a three-year relationship with Cindi Santana when he went to South East High School on Sept. 30, 2011, and forced her to speak with him, prosecutors said.

Lopez grabbed the teen in a headlock after she flagged down a school dean, who was stabbed when she tried to intervene. A football player who then tried to come to the girl’s aid was also stabbed before Lopez stabbed his former girlfriend twice in the back. She died later that day during surgery.

Jurors convicted Lopez on March 4 of first-degree murder and false imprisonment, along with two counts each of assault with a deadly weapon, bringing a weapon on school grounds and resisting an executive officer and three counts of assault on a peace officer.

The jury acquitted him of a third count of assault with a deadly weapon and a criminal threats charge involving another person who tried to intervene after Santana’s stabbing.

Lopez, who was 18 at the time, was ultimately subdued by school police and staff members.

City News Service

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