Remember Delbert “Shorty” Belton? He was the World War II veteran who was beaten to death in a Spokane parking lot in August 2013 by a pair of black teenage thugs with too much time on their hands. Although the city’s chief of police, Frank Straub, ruled out race as a causative factor, the deadly assault took place at a time when blacks were just beginning to realize how much black lives mattered and how little white ones did. A year earlier, a Florida jury had acquitted George Zimmerman in the shooting death of black teen Trayvon Martin, which precipitated a rash of murders of lone whites by black mobs. Shorty Belton was just another statistic.
And his killers, Kenan Adams-Kinard and Demetrius Glenn, were just a couple of kids in need of cash who chose to rob what they thought would be an easy mark. It was never their plan to kill Belton, but the old fool put up a fight and things just escalated out of control.
That was Adams-Kinard and Glenn’s story, and they were sticking to it — until last month, when Adams-Kinard, in advance of a jury trial whose outcome was at best uncertain, changed his plea to guilty, agreeing to a 20-year prison sentence.
On Monday, Glenn followed suit. NBC Seattle affiliate KHQ reports:
Jury selection in Glenn’s trial was expected to begin Monday morning, but instead a plea deal was announced…. [T]he plea agreement is similar to the one Kenan Adams-Kinard received earlier this year, where Glenn would plead guilty to murder, and the other charges would be dropped.
In exchange for pleading guilty, prosecutors are dropping the other charges and recommending a sentence of 16 years, plus time already served.
Glenn’ [sic] sentencing is based on the 2012 Supreme Court ruling of Miller v. Alabama, which ruled it unconstitutional to sentence juveniles to mandatory life sentences without the possibility of parole. His sentencing is scheduled for March 19, 2015.
Glenn’s family declined to comment following the hearing, however one member said, “our condolences to the Belton family.”
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