DETROIT -- (WXYZ) -- One of three defendants charged with the murder of a Detroit firefighter was sentenced to a minimum of 39 years in prison for his role in the death.
David Madrigal was found murdered inside his Detroit home last December.
The 59-year old had been planning to retire from the Detroit Fire Department after 26 years on the job.
7 Action News learned he had been planning his retirement party for months before his brutal murder.
The Wayne County Medical Examiner ruled the respected firefighter died from blunt force trauma to the head.
His home had been ransacked and his car was stolen by the suspects and set on fire, according to police. A safe was taken from his home, too.
Timmy Soto pleaded guilty to felony murder and felony firearm. The 32-year-old apologized in court today.
"I apologize to the family for what I did...I wasn't in the right state of mind," said Soto.
Madrigal's children also spoke at the sentencing.
"He was taken out while sleeping by a coward," said Madrigal's son.
The firefighter's daughter said her dad loved Detroit
"He dedicated his life to the city, to the department," she said.
As for the other two defendants: 19-year old Christian Rasnick will be sentenced Thursday and Nicole O'Neill, 33, is set to go to a jury trial. That's expected to take place in March.
Mesa County / Grand Junction Daily Sentinel