January 14th, 2011
It was an emotional day in Sedgwick County court Friday as a 19-year-old man convicted for his role in a double murder faces the family of the victims. This, before learning his prison sentence was harsher than expected.
During 19-year-old Samuel Holton's sentencing hearing, Jessie Foust's father described his Thanksgiving Day, 2009. It was the day he learned his daughter had been murdered, along with the father of her son, Adrian Jackson.
Both families addressed Holton in court Friday.
"I'm not going to lie to you man, I wish the worst for you. I wish the worst for you," said Jackson's stepfather Juan Horn.
It was the pain expressed during the hearing that spurred a harsher sentence for Holton. Holton admits to helping kill Foust and Jackson in their Wichita home, while their two young boys were still inside.
"The two people that were 'Mommy' and 'Daddy' for Tyron and his brother little Adrian were dead lying on the floor. Not an enjoyable two days for the boys, was it?" said Jessie's father, Graham Foust.
As part of a plea agreement, Holton pleaded no contest to second degree murder for the killings.
"There were defenses available for Mr. Holton. I want to point that out because it simply adds to the maturity of his decision to accept responsibility," said Holton's attorney, Sal Intagliata.
The agreement recommends a prison sentence of less than 13 years, but the judge handed down a sentence of more than 18-and-a-half years.
"The harm inflicted in this case, as evidenced by comments of those present in the courtroom, is so great, that in my mind a consecutive sentence on count three is appropriate," said Sedgwick County District Judge David Kaufman.
Although Foust's father asked for the strictest punishment possible, he also says no sentence will bring his daughter back.
"We're not punishing for not letting Jessie buy a house, use her college degree, and raise her child to adulthood. Do I forgive you? No. Do I want the maximum penalty allowed by law? Yes," said Graham Foust to Holton.
There are two other people charged in the murders. Holton admits to pulling the trigger in Jessie Foust's killing, while he was not the principle shooter in the murder of Adrian Jackson.
In addition to prison time, Holton was sentenced to three years probation, and a minimum of $5,000 restitution to the Foust family.
The man charged with the 2009 murder of a Wichita couple been sentenced.
Friday, Judge David Kaufman sentenced Sam Holton to 224 months, or just over 181/2 years in prison, plus 3 years probation following his sentence.
Holton changed his plea from not guilty to no contest to charges of second-degree murder and aggravated robbery back in December of last year.
Holton was charged in the shooting of Jesse Foust and Adrian Jackson on Thanksgiving Day, 2009.