Two teens pleaded guilty to murder for the death of Lorenzo Parks.
One shot him. The other, 17-year-old James Purnell Mapp III, told him to pull the trigger, Pierce County prosecutors say.
“You had your finger virtually placed over his,” Parks’ sister, Adra Parks, told Mapp on Tuesday at his sentencing.
Her brother died last year when Mapp and six other young men, during a night of drinking and shoplifting, decided to rob someone and came across 38-year-old Parks in Parkland.
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They tried to rob him but he had nothing to give up, showing them as much by turning out his pockets, according to court records.
But 17-year-old Dakota Mikalle Collins shot him anyway. Sheriff’s deputies found Parks’ body May 18, 2016, near South 127th Street and Pacific Avenue.
Mapp pleaded guilty last month to second-degree murder and first-degree attempted robbery, meaning there was no trial.
Deputy Prosecutor John Neeb told the court Tuesday that because Mapp told Collins to “shoot,” they should be treated the same at sentencing.
Defense attorney Philip Thornton argued that would be wrong.
“Mr. Mapp will tell you, I said: ‘Don’t shoot, don’t shoot,’” Thornton told Superior Court Judge Stephanie Arend.
Without a trial, Arend said, she’s privy to very little about the facts of a case.
But what she knew for sure about this one, she said, was that “Mr. Mapp is one of two who did plead guilty to murder in the second degree, and the others did not.”
She gave him a low-end sentence of 18 years, nine months in prison, slightly less than the 21 years, eight months she gave Collins last week.
Thornton told the court Mapp started using drugs after his parents separated and the deaths of his grandparents.
But Arend noted Mapp appeared to have strong family support growing up, especially compared to some of his codefendents. Plus, she pointed out, Mapp had prior convictions, including for unlawful gun possession and assault.
When it was Mapp’s turn to speak, he apologized for what happened.
“I could have done something,” he said. “Instead, I did nothing.”
He said he plans to focus on education while incarcerated. And he told the court he doesn’t want his younger sister to grow up with him behind bars.
Parks’ family said he has children — two 18-year-olds, a 10-year-old and a 14-year-old — who will have to grow up without their father. The oldest, they said, overcame a difficult upbringing and is studying at a four-year university.
Loved ones remember Parks as an excellent cook who talked about wanting to be a drug dependency counselor for troubled kids.
Also sentenced Tuesday in connection to his death were 21-year-old Lonnie Lawerence Brantley Jr. and 17-year-old twins Dasjon Michael Robinson and Rasjon Andre Robinson.
All pleaded guilty to first-degree attempted robbery, and first-degree rendering criminal assistance
Arend gave Brantley five years, three months behind bars. Dasjon Robinson got five years, 10 1/2 months; his brother was sentenced to six years, six months and three weeks.
Khiry Terrell Baylis, 18, was sentenced last month after he pleaded guilty to the same charges. Arend gave him four years, three months behind bars.
Last to be sentenced is 21-year-old Jamar Latez Jones, who has pleaded guilty to first-degree manslaughter. He is scheduled to be in court Oct. 27.