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A Robbinsdale man has been sentenced to 40 years in prison for fatally shooting his ex-girlfriend in 2020.

Erik Eggleston, 40, was sentenced in the murder of 29-year-old Nigar "Nika" Mammadzada in Hennepin County court Thursday. Eggleston had been charged with intentional second-degree murder, which he pleaded guilty to earlier this month.

On Nov. 12, 2020, Mammadzada dropped her and Eggleston’s daughter off at a babysitter and her mother off at work before returning to her home on the 3500 block of Welcome Avenue in Crystal.

When her mother returned that afternoon, she found Mammadzada dead near her desk, having been shot twice.

Her mother called 911 and stated she immediately suspected Eggleston, who she said her daughter had broken up with. He had been over the previous night and seemed jealous that Mammadzada had plans with another man, she said.

Erik Eggleston

At around 9 p.m. that night, Eggleston was found outside of a friend’s house suffering from cuts caused by an apparent suicide attempt. He was treated at a nearby hospital.

Police searched a car park outside of the friend’s home. Inside, they found a shotgun with what looked like blood on the barrel. The car was on loan to Mammadzada from a dealership.

According to Minnesota sentencing guidelines, the presumptive sentence for a case like this would typically be 306 months. But the Hennepin County Attorney’s Office stated that aggravating factors led to a harsher sentence. 

An obituary for Mammadzada, a mother-of-one, says she was a graduate of the University of Azerbaijan, had a Master's Degree in Japanese, and spoke six languages in total.

At the time of her death, she was working two jobs to support her daughter, Kaya.

"She was loved by so many – she was one of the kindest souls, always saw the good in people and filled the room with her contagious personality," the obituary states.

If you know anyone who is affected by domestic violence, you can find more information on services available here, via the Minnesota DPS.

You can also call the Day One Crisis Hotline at 1-866-223-1111.

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