AUSTIN, Texas - A jury sentenced De'Ondre White to 30 years in prison Thursday. White was found guilty of murder the day prior for his actions during the 2021 Sixth Street mass shooting.
After finding De’Ondre White guilty of murder for his actions during the 2021 Sixth Street mass shooting, court resumed for the jury to determine his prison sentence.
The state and defense asked the jury to consider two drastically different prison sentences. The defense called for five years or a little higher, but nothing in the 20-30 year range. The state requested a sentence of at least 40 years.
The Kantor family was crying in the front row during the entire sentence hearing. Kantor’s mother testified to the jury that her whole family is lost without him.
The state attorney reminded the jury this sentence is not just about Kantor, this is also about the 14 other people shot in the shooting. The state named all of those victims in their closing arguments along with the injuries they sustained.
Other victims took the stand. One included Adrianna Salazar, who was shot through one leg and into the other. Her testimony was extremely emotional as she told the jury how she still has emotional trauma from the incident.
The defense called witnesses to the stand who were close figures in White’s life, including his aunt who he lived with since he was 6 years old. She said she raised White as her own son. She told the jury White’s not a bad person, just someone who was at the wrong place at the wrong time.
She mentioned this is unlike anything he has ever done. She said when the police called her in 2021 to inform her about what happened, she immediately messaged the Kantor family to express her sincerest apologies. White cried during multiple testimonies, but especially while his aunt was speaking to the jury.
"De'Ondre is not some street thug, right? Some bad person whose life is just worth nothing that we should just wad up like tissue paper and throw away in a trash bag of the penitentiary. He is not that person. He is a kind person. A person who has folks who love him and who care about him will be there for him for the rest of his life," said Russ Hunt Jr., defense attorney for White.
DE'ONDRE WHITE MURDER TRIAL
- De'Ondre White found guilty of murder by jury in 2021 mass shooting on Sixth Street
- De'Ondre White murder trial: First APD interview shown to jury
- De'Ondre White murder trial: Friend tells jury shooter's actions were in self-defense
- De'Ondre White murder trial: Text messages between accused shooter, friends presented
- De'Ondre White murder trial: Day two of witness testimony
The state agreed with the defense that White is not a bad person, but he did make a bad decision, and that decision must have consequences.
The state presented evidence showing White had photos and videos of him posing with guns. A photo also presented had text addressing his change in appearance which was said to have been taken a few days after the shooting.
"He doesn't look remorseful. He doesn't look scared, and he doesn't look sorry about what happened a couple of days prior. [This] shows someone with multiple firearms making hand gestures that are consistent with gang signs and living a life that glorifies these guns and that is actively talking about using them out on the streets," said Jean Sullivan, state attorney.
The defense told the jury they accept the guilty verdict but asked them to not throw White’s life away with a high prison sentence.
"That's a person whose life is worth something. This is a young man with a real life, and it's tragic, and it's terrible what happened in the case, but Mr. White truly believed that he was protecting himself, protecting his friends," said Hunt.