Nathan R. Fouts

Nathan R. Fouts

A Marana man who pleaded guilty last month to killing his mother was sentenced Monday to 16 years in prison, court officials said.

Nathan Ray Fouts was arrested Feb. 9 after telling a Pima County sheriff’s deputy that he’d killed his mother, 62-year-old Debra Elaine Fouts, according to a police report.

The deputy said Fouts was rambling and did not make any sense, but requested a welfare check on his mother at her home in Continental Ranch, the report said.

Marana police went to the home shortly before 9 p.m. and through a window saw Debra Fouts lying on her back on the living room floor. Officers reported that it was apparent she had been dead for some time, the report said. She had been shot twice in the back, and officers found three rifles and a handgun in the home, where Nathan Fouts also lived.

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While police searched the home, Fouts was taken to a hospital for chest pain, telling paramedics he was “hurting from his sins.” He also admitted to smoking methamphetamine a few hours earlier, and possibly also heroin and marijuana, the report said.

Fouts was charged with first-degree murder and prohibited possession of a firearm, but in November accepted an agreement with the Pima County Attorney’s Office, pleading guilty to one count of domestic-violence-related second-degree murder, according to Pima County Superior Court records.

He was sentenced by Judge Howard Fell.

Contact reporter Caitlin Schmidt at or 573-4191. Twitter: @caitlinschmidt