Man gets 60 years prison in murder for one penny

Reuters News
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Posted: Sep 23, 2011 6:54 PM

By Jim Forsyth

SAN ANTONIO (Reuters) - A Texas jury on Friday sentenced an admitted drug dealer to sixty years in prison for the shotgun slaying of a man in a robbery which netted a grand total of one cent.

The jury also ordered Kenza Triplett, 23, of San Antonio to pay a fine of $9,999.99, the maximum $10,000 fine allowed for murder conviction, minus the penny that was in victim Derek Anderson's pocket when he was killed.

Witnesses testified at Triplett's trial that he arrived at a known crack house on San Antonio's west side in August of 2009, put on a bandanna, charged into a bedroom and pointed the shotgun at Anderson, yelling 'how much money you got (expletive)?'" before killing him with a point blank blast from the shotgun.

Triplett claimed the shooting was an accident. Police called the incident an armed robbery committed during the course of a home invasion.

Anderson's mother testified that her son's pockets contained one penny and a handful of sunflower seeds when he was killed.

(Editing by Greg McCune)