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Man gets 14 years in slaying of friend

Citizen Staff Writer



Joseph Alexander Tylutki, 20, was sentenced Tuesday to 14 years in prison for the 2007 shooting death of 19-year-old Vincent Bohlman, his friend since third grade.

Court documents show that Tylutki was selling marijuana for Bohlman, who had been arrested shortly before the shooting in an unrelated pot selling case.

Pima County Superior Court Judge Michael Cruikshank said Tylutki should serve his time in protective custody because of a history of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, possible fetal alcohol syndrome and evidence that he had undergone at least six years of psychological counseling for emotional problems.

Only the Department of Corrections can make that determination, Cruikshank said.

Tylutki will not be eligible for parole.

He had been charged with first-degree murder in the Nov. 27, 2007, slaying.

Tylutki called 911 and confessed to the shooting immediately afterward, telling police he had shot Bohlman in self-defense. A knife had been placed in Bohlman’s hand after he was shot, police said.

Tylutki pleaded guilty in March to second-degree murder and faced 10 to 18 years in prison.

Tylutki wept Tuesday as he apologized to Bohlman’s family.

“I’m sorry about what I did. I wish I could take it back,” he said.

Both young men were graduates of Salpointe Catholic High School.

Tylutki and Bohlman became friends in third grade when they attended Ss. Peter and Paul Catholic School, according to testimony in the case.

Their friendship continued through their years at Salpointe, where Tylutki looked up to Bohlman, a popular football player.

More than 100 people were interviewed in the preparation of a presentence report, which described the relationship between the two young men and said Tylutki was someone “who struggled in life.”

Defense attorney Michael Bloom said Tylutki was bullied in school for years because he wears glasses and had self-esteem problems.

Vincent Bohlman said his son “had his head screwed on tight” and planned to become a “facial reconstruction surgeon. He was so positive,” his father said.

He said Bohlman had stood up for Tylutki on the playground in grade school in a dispute over a ball.

He called Tylutki cowardly and “an animal who admitted killing my son with no motive and no warning.”

Frances Barrientez, Bohlman’s mother, told the judge it was difficult to describe “the devastation that his death has brought to my life.” Bohlman was her firstborn, she said.

“He was not given a choice. He was an unarmed man.”

Both parents asked for the maximum possible prison sentence. Neither parent mentioned their son’s drug activities.

Court documents state Bohlman, a University of Arizona sophomore, was selling marijuana out of two apartments and was in debt to the “Mexican mafia.”

Tylutki was described in court records as a “runner” for Bohlman, collecting money for Bohlman’s drug deals.

Bohlman was shot in a bedroom of his family’s home after he and Tylutki and another friend smoked marijuana, took illegally obtained Xanax, an anti-anxiety medication, and then started to “bicker,” the judge said Tuesday.

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