Man gets life, no parole for burning family during Palm Bay burglary

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PALM BAY, Fla. —

The ringleader of a home invasion in which a Palm Bay mother and her seven children were terrorized has been sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Authorities said 29-year-old Leaundrea Parker, who has a tattoo reading, "STATE VS PARKER," led a group that ambushed a family and threw hot oil on them nearly three years ago.

Parker is already serving 30 years on a charge of aggravated assault, but he learned Thursday that once that sentence ends, he'll begin serving the life sentence.

"I find that this act is evil," said Judge Charles Crawford. "Anyone who would willingly participate in scalding a child with hot oil and/or the mother when she is attempting to protect the child, if he lives among us, he needs to be culled from the herd."

In December 2009, Parker and at least two other men broke into a home on San Filippo Drive. Several children were home alone because of a medical emergency and their mother returned as the robbery was in progress.

The mother told the men she didn't have any money, but that's when they put cooking oil on the stove and burned the woman.

One of the children escaped and made a call to 911.

"My mom is burned all over her stomach and chest and my sister's back is burned," the child told the dispatcher.

"It evolved into torture where they got the stove and the oil and they were burning people to tell them where the money was. It was a horrible case," said assistant state attorney Bill Respess.

Along with a life sentence for armed burglary, Parker was sentenced to an additional 30 years for aggravated child abuse, plus 15 years for aggravated battery.

He blew a kiss to his own family as he left the courtroom.

Parker's co-defendant has yet to stand trial.