TERRE HAUTE -- Convicted double-murderer Kevin L. Hampton will have to look at the world through cell bars for a long time.
"When Kevin Hampton took Toni from us, he took everything about her; her children, her children's children. He took her future, and our future with her," Virgi Dickison, Tanette Dickison's aunt, said in a tearful victim impact statement -- which was not only for her family, but for all of Hampton's victims and their families.
"He should never see the light of day without cell bars between him and the light of the sun."
Vigo Co. Superior Court Division 3 Judge David R. Bolk agreed, and sentenced Hampton to 65 years imprisonment for each charge of murder in the 2004 strangulation deaths of Dickison and Cassie Harris Monday afternoon.
"If ever there was a case for a maximum sentence, this is it," Bolk said before announcing his sentence.
Upon completion of serving 40 years for an unrelated dealing cocaine conviction and an 85-year sentence for the conviction for the murder of Dianna Lehman in 2000, Hampton will begin the 130 year prison sentence.
Facing 255 years imprisonment, even with good time credit allowed, Hampton will have to serve more than 125 years before being considered for release.
During a review of Hampton's prior criminal record -- which included six prior felonies, four under violent circumstances -- Bolk said it appeared that the only time Hampton was not in trouble was when he was in jail.
"It is clear, Mr. Hampton, that you have been unable to stay out of trouble since 1981," Bolk said.
Defense attorney Daniel Weber argued that pending felony cases against Hampton in Nevada and California not be taken into consideration by the court during the sentencing phase.
"We need to remember there is a presumption of innocence in the pending cases and it would be improper to consider those cases here for sentencing," Weber said, then he brought up Hampton's pending appeal in the 2006 murder conviction.
"The Lehman case is on appeal and a decision is expected within a few months. It would be improper to place too much reliance upon that conviction for sentencing purposes at this time."
In an unusual moment of mutual agreement, Hampton agreed with Weber when he made a statement to the court.
"I think we're gonna get this overturned because you denied my right to represent myself," Hampton said about the three murder convictions, then requested his right to appeal. "I'll see you in court again."