Man gets life in Volusia County sniper rifle murder



VOLUSIA COUNTY, Fla. - It's was an emotional day in Volusia County where a man was sentenced to life in prison for shooting and killing a 24-year-old mother.

Willie Poindexter was sentenced for shooting Katie Burson in the head with a sniper rifle in 2011.

Channel 9's Blaine Tolison was in court Tuesday as members of Burson's family asked for the life sentence as Poindexter continued to deny he played a role in the murder.

"Opinions and assumptions is what got me here," Poindexter said.

"You lie," yelled a member of Burson's family.

At the time of the killing, police said Poindexter was getting revenge for a fight that same night that didn't involve Burson.

"He shot her down like quail, like she was on a fence or something like that," a member of Burson's family said.

Burson's relatives expressed their disgust over the killing. Her older sister talked about Burson's 8-year-old son, who is now without a mother.

"She was taken from him two weeks before his 7th birthday, and we buried her on the 20th, my birthday," said Loretta Burson.

Detectives believe there was another person involved in the shooting who was never caught, but Poindexter never gave them a name.

The judge had no sympathy for him just before handing down the sentence.

"Three things stuck out in my mind: Utterly irresponsible, impulsive behavior and no thought of consequence," said Judge Frank Marriot.

While the judge sentenced Poindexter to life in prison, he did not say it was without parole and Poindexter has the opportunity to appeal.

Poindexter was also sentenced to 15 years on top of his life sentence for the attempted murder of Leshanna Bates, who was wounded that same night in 2011.