The mother of a murdered girl confronted the killer in court last week, telling him, “I will never forgive you,” Yahoo News reported.
Stacey Hilton fought back tears as she said to Savron Schmus: “I hate you.” A Michigan judge sentenced the teenager to 40-100 years in prison for killing his half-sister, 18-year-old McKenna Hilton. Addressing her deceased daughter, the mother declared: “I’m so sorry that I wasn’t there that day to protect you. You were my only baby and you’re always going to be my only baby and I love you very much.”
Schmus was 16 years old when he strangled the girl in August 2016. He pleaded guilty to murder as part of an agreement with prosecutors. The grieving mother told him in court that “McKenna did nothing to you to deserve what you did to her,” adding: “McKenna considered you to be her brother. And I remember her saying that she loved the kid, referring to you. She drove you to make sure you got to driver’s training, she let you stay in her room, we went on vacations together. I don’t know what possessed you to think that you had the right to take her life the way that you did.”
Hilton continued: “I hope that when you go to prison, you get exactly what you deserve. I hope that when you come out of prison, it’s not on your two feet; I hope it’s in a body bag. … What he did was so heinous, it was premeditated, it was so hateful, so evil. He doesn’t deserve a second chance. McKenna doesn’t get one, we don’t get one; he doesn’t deserve one.”
In an interview with Inside Edition, Hilton explained that Savon and McKenna had the same father but different mothers. Investigators have not determined a motive for the killing. During the sentencing hearing, the defendant bowed his head while Hilton and two others made emotional statements. The father, David Schmus, read a verse from the Bible’s book of Corinthians about enduring love. He later cried when the sentence was announced, according to WOODTV.com.
Schmus’ lawyer, who claimed that his client was “truly remorseful,” asked the judge to consider the young man’s age and clean criminal record. However, the defendant received the most severe sentence possible under the plea agreement. “I have never seen so many letters from family and friends of a victim of a crime,” the judge said. “After dealing with several murders and sexual assaults on children, this is the most horrific crime the court has handled.” Hilton praised the sentence, writing on Facebook that it was “the best we could have hoped for.”
The mother expressed skepticism about Schmus’ professed regret. “As much as they say that he’s remorseful, he’s not,” she said. “I’ve dealt with him enough to know he’s not. So there’s nothing more to say to him. That’s over and I just hope people remember McKenna and do good for her, because she would have done wonderful things and we want to honor her. And we want to continue to honor her and make sure her memory stays alive.”