SEATTLE - A Washington state man convicted in a Kent toddler’s killing could be behind bars until he’s in his 70s.
On Friday, a judge sentenced DeMartrae Kime to more than 48 years in prison.
Kime was charged with the April 2015 murder of Malijha Grant, who was sitting in her car seat when she was shot in the head.
Investigators called the little girl’s murder a gang-related revenge killing.
“Malijah was murdered, killed, shot in the head in broad daylight while heading home to her safe place,” said Lisa Lynch, Malijha’s mother.
Police said Kime was targeting Malijha’s father, but killed Malijha instead.
Despite being found guilty of murder, Kime maintains his innocence.
“The hardest thing for me to do is come in here and apologize for something I didn’t do,” said Kime. “I did not kill your daughter, nor was I a participant in killing your daughter.”
Lynch said she’ll never get to celebrate Malijha’s milestones and she’ll never forgive her child’s killer.
“I hate you and I hope you suffer,” she said. “I hope you wake up and see her beautiful smile haunting you."
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