Dad who killed girl over broken Xbox gets prison

March 14, 2008 4:23:37 AM PDT
A man who killed his 17-month-old daughter in a rage over a broken Xbox was sentenced to more than two decades in prison. Prosecutors said Tyrone Spellman, 27, killed Alayiah Turman in September 2006 with at least five blows to the head when she pulled down his Xbox console. The force of the blows cracked the toddler's skull several times.

A jury convicted Spellman of third-degree murder and child endangerment in January. He was sentenced Thursday to the maximum 22 1/2 to 45 years in prison.

"I've been doing this 13 years, and this is one of the few cases that's ever left me at a loss for words," prosecutor James Berardinelli said. "There's never a good reason for (murder), but this is just the pettiest of reasons."

Spellman expressed remorse for the girl's death at the hearing, but defense lawyer Bobby Hoof said afterward he would consider appealing the conviction.

Police believe Alayiah's pregnant mother, Mia Turman, was napping when the toddler was killed.

Spellman confessed to police the next day, but Hoof argued that his client's statement was coerced and that Spellman was trying to protect Mia Turman.

The city took custody of the couple's second daughter, born after Alayiah's death.

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