The highest court in Massachusetts has overturned a first-degree murder conviction against a man who stabbed his girlfriend to death, finding that jurors should have been told they could consider the man's consumption of alcohol when determining whether he acted in a cruel or atrocious manner.

The Supreme Judicial Court vacated the conviction of Mario Gonzalez and sent the case back to a lower court. The high court said prosecutors must now decide whether to reduce his conviction to second-degree murder or put him on trial for a second time on a first-degree murder charge.

A spokesman for Suffolk District Attorney Dan Conley said prosecutors believe the facts of the case warranted a first-degree murder case. He said prosecutors are reviewing the decision to determine their next step.