GRAND RAPIDS, MICH. - A Grand Rapids man convicted in the March 10 shooting death of a young father deserves to spend the rest of his life in prison for what the judge called a “brutal execution.’’
“There is just no excuse or justification,'' Kent County Circuit Court Judge Mark Trusock told 32-year-old Robert Hallman. "You are clearly a danger to society.’’
A Kent County jury last month convicted Hallman of gunning down Stroy Pittman at Alger Meadows Apartments on Ottillia Street at Nelson Avenue SE. Hallman fired 31 rounds from a rifle, striking Pittman 19 times.
“They asked you to leave because you had caused some problems,’’ the judge said. “You went outside and instead of just leaving, you decided to pick up an assault rifle and come back in that apartment. I don’t think you should ever be allowed out in society and I am very glad that you were convicted of first-degree murder.’’
Pittman’s mother addressed the court prior to sentencing, saying her son’s murder “destroyed my family.’’
“I’ve got so much anger and hurt inside me,’’ Kimberly Pittman said. “You just don’t know what you took away. I wish you had known my son or got to know my son before you pulled the trigger.’’
Hallman apologized to Pittman’s family, but says he is innocent.
“I would like to say that I am truly sorry for their loss and I did not commit this crime,’’ he told the packed courtroom. “And I ask that you be lenient with sentencing because I have a family.’’
The shooting followed an argument between Hallman and the 26-year-old victim. Pittman died at the scene; it was the city’s first homicide of 2016.
“All of the rounds are fired at one person,’’ Kent County Assistant Prosecutor Travis Earley told jurors during closing arguments at Hallman's October trial. “Like a dog laying on the ground, he’s shot from behind.’’
(© 2016 WZZM)