Esteban Nunez was charged with murder and other counts stemming from the Oct. 4, 2008, stabbing death of Luis Santos, 22.
Saying that he thought the 16-year prison sentence Esteban Nunez was serving was "excessive" the governor reduced his sentence from 16 years to 7 years.
The move comes just hours before Schwarzenegger leaves office.
Nunez pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter and assault with a deadly weapon for his role in a fight that killed a 22-year-old man near San Diego State University in 2008.
Prosecutors say Nunez and friends went looking for a fight after they were refused entry to a fraternity party.