5th person convicted in videotaped beating death

June 1, 2011 8:27:05 PM PDT
The final trial in connection with the videotaped beating death of a Chicago honor student ended with a guilty verdict Wednesday.

Derrion Albert, 16, was killed in 2009. Five people faced charges in his murder.

A jury found the fifth and final defendant, 20-year-old Lapoleon Colbert, guilty of first degree murder after deliberating for about two hours. He will be sentenced July 19.

Derrion's mother, Anjanette Albert, says she has never missed a day of court. Albert does not see Colbert's conviction as a victory or celebration. Instead, she says she felt numb.

The video that captured the 16-year-old's death highlighted youth violence on Chicago's streets to the nation and the world. Derrion was attacked as he walked home from school. He was slammed in the head with a board, punched, kicked, and stomped. The incident was recorded on a cell phone.

"Another life gone. It's hurtful. It's heartbreaking," said Anjanette Albert told ABC7 with tears in her eyes. "I hate that we're all losing our children like this, it's sad."

"Justice was served. The individuals have been held accountable and responsible for what they did - their actions," said Norman Golliday, Derrion Albert's grandfather.

The case got national attention, prompting U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan and Attorney General Eric Holder to meet with city officials about youth violence.

The four other defendants in Albert's case have already been convicted. A 15-year-old boy was found guilty of murder and will remain in prison until he is 21. Eric Carson pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 26 years in prison. A jury convicted Silvonus Shannon. He got 32 years behind bars. Eugene Riley was also convicted. His sentencing is scheduled for June 14.

As Derrion Albert's mother and grandfather left court Wednesday, they noted the six lives lost and the families left behind.

"We've still got a long way to go as far as healing is concerned. The fact that we don't have to keep coming down here and sitting in a courtroom and dealing with that whole process is going to make a difference," said Golliday.

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