A U.S. Marine Corps veteran found guilty of involuntary manslaughter in the 2022 death of a man in Ridgecrest was sentenced Thursday to two years’ probation.

Brian Coykendall, 34, had faced a murder charge at his trial last month but jurors convicted him of the lesser charge of involuntary manslaughter.

Prosecutors say the two men were accused of killing Matthew Ian Peterson, 43, on March 4, 2022. Peterson was severely beaten and shot once in the back of the head.

Peterson and Coykendall were once friends. But after Peterson went to jail, Coykendall started dating his girlfriend.

Defense attorneys at trial argued Peterson was accidentally shot in a struggle over a gun. A prosecutor said the killing was planned in advance.

On Thursday, Coykendall’s attorney Deputy Public Defender T. Alan Rogers asked that the court sentence Coykendall to probation since he suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder from his service in Afghanistan.