The man accused of shooting and killing his ex-wife's new husband in Loudoun County early this year pleaded no contest to murder on Wednesday.
Minh Nguyen pleaded no contest to murder, malicious wounding, and breaking and entering in the death of Corey Mattison.
Assistant Commonwealth's Attorney for Loudoun County Joshua Steward criticized Nguyen's plea.
"In a guilty plea, you stand up and you recognize morally, if nothing else, 'Yes, I am guilty, I did this and I deserve to be punished,'" he said. "No contest, you're essentially just saying, 'Listen, I know if I went to trial I'd lose.'"
Nguyen, then 38, broke into the home his ex-wife, Denise Mattison, shared with Mattison on the 44200 block of Sonora Lane in Ashburn on Jan. 15 about 9:30 p.m., prosecutors said.
Nguyen burst into the home, shot Mattison, stole a car and drove off, police said. He then returned to the scene and started beating the dying man, according to police.
Two of the Mattisons' five children were home at the time of the shooting. During the attack, Denise Mattison came home with a third child, police said.
Neighbors previously told News4 the shooting followed months of arguments between the divorcees over child custody and visitation issues. They share three children.
Denise Mattison was pregnant at the time of her husband's murder and arrived in court Wednesday with her newborn, who she named Corey. She declined to speak.
Nguyen, a one-time social media tech pioneer, is set to be sentenced in February and faces life in prison. His lawyers plan to present information on his mental health.