A 32-year-old man will spend the next 375 years in prison, and he is only eligible for parole after serving 281 years of the close to four-century jail term.
Jeremy Arrington, from New Jersey, was found guilty following a 10-day jury trial for the murders of Ariel Little Whitehurst, 7, Al-Jahon Whitehurst, 11, and Syasia McBurroughs, 23.
The prison term, which was announced by the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office on Friday, is the equivalent of three life sentences per New Jersey law.
The convict will serve the sentences concurrently, along with additional 50-year sentences for each of three counts of attempted murder, according to Yahoo.com.
“Justice has been served. This defendant is pure evil and clearly deserves all 375 years in New Jersey State Prison for the terrible crimes he committed on Nov. 5, 2016. These families have waited over five years for this moment, and we are all so grateful for this sentence,” the news outlet quoted Deputy Chief Assistant Prosecutor Justin Edwab as having said.
It is reported that on Nov. 5, 2016, Arrington broke into a Newark home with a loaded gun and held six people hostage, including the Whitehurst children and McBurroughs – all of whom he murdered, as well as the children’s then-29-year-old mother and her 13-year-old twin siblings.
He tied the victims and stabbed them many times with kitchen knives.
The Whitehurst children suffered severe stab wounds and were pronounced dead at the University Hospital, while McBurroughs was shot to death and pronounced dead on the scene, reports say.
The prosecutor’s office said: “Police were able to respond because a young girl with autism, who is unrelated to the family and was just visiting, escaped and called for help from her phone in a closet.”
Arrington fled the scene before police officers arrived, but was arrested the next day at a Pomona Avenue residence.
Carolyn A. Murray, the then-acting Essex County Prosecutor, said back in 2016 that Arrington may have committed the heinous crime over a Facebook post.
“Someone in the house, it appears, may have posted a media account of the fact that Mr. Arrington was wanted on a social media platform, and it appears that that’s part of the motivation, at least, for him going to the house on Saturday.”
After the sentencing Assistant Prosecutor Chelsea Coleman expressed gratitude that at long last justice has been done to the families whose relatives the convict murdered.
“While nothing can bring back the lives of Ariel, Al-Jahon, and Syasia, we hope today’s sentence will provide some sense of closure to their families.”
Arrington was convicted of 28 criminal charges, including three counts of murder and three counts of attempted murder. Other charges included burglary, criminal restraint, unlawful possession of a handgun, unlawful possession of a knife, and possession of a handgun and a knife for an unlawful purpose.
Before the murders for which he has now been sentenced, he had been arrested 10 times between 2006 and 2016. He also had four felony convictions and three separate pending charges.