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Arkansas man guilty in death of estranged wife; told police 'if he couldn't have her, no one could,' affidavit says

The estranged husband of a Greene County grocery store clerk who was fatally shot in December 2015 pleaded guilty Thursday to killing her, 2nd Judicial Circuit Prosecuting Attorney Scott Ellington said.


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Charles Quintana, 59, pleaded guilty to first-degree murder and robbery in the Dec. 23, 2015, slaying of his wife, Stacy Quintana. Circuit Judge Brent Davis sentenced Quintana to 50 years in prison.

He is the fourth suspect to plead guilty in the case, Ellington said.

Earlier, Stacey Keplinger, 37, of Leachville and Darrel Swan, 54, of Paragould each pleaded guilty to first-degree murder and each received an 80-year sentence in prison. Tracy Stone, 45, of Paragould pleaded guilty to hindering apprehension and was sentenced to five years in prison.

Stacy Quintana was shot and killed at Lorado Grocery about 12 miles north of Jonesboro in what police first believed was an attempted robbery. Authorities arrested Keplinger moments after the shooting as she walked along Arkansas 168 about a mile from the grocery store.

Affidavits filed in Greene County Circuit Court indicate Keplinger went to the store the morning of Dec. 23, 2015, and forced Stacy Quintana and Aaron Carter, a delivery driver from Conway, into her car. Police later found Quintana's body inside the car. She had been shot with a 9mm handgun. Carter said Keplinger pointed the weapon at him, but it jammed when she tried to shoot him.

Keplinger slashed Carter's neck with a knife, but it did not require medical treatment, authorities said.

During an interview with police, Charles Quintana admitted to planning the slaying of his wife and provided the weapon Keplinger used to kill her.

Quintana told police his wife had left him and "if he couldn't have her, no one could," the affidavit indicated.

State Desk on 04/21/2017

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