The first teen convicted of murdering Perry teen Sam Poss was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole on Tuesday.
Back in May, it took a jury just 20 minutes to deliberate and convict Dakota White guilty on all counts.
White was charged with malice murder, felony murder, two counts of aggravated assault, concealing the death of another and tampering with evidence in the October 2016 death of Poss.
At last month's two-day sentencing hearing, the main point of discussion was the topic of parole.
Judge Lukemire said at the outset that the issue was determining whether White fit in what he called “the narrow subset of juveniles” who deserve a life sentence without parole.
The state’s attorneys said they he does and used testimony from Poss’ parents.
His father Christian Poss said, “my son, who loved to make music, was silenced forever” by Dakota White.
The state’s attorney also played a phone call recording from while Dakota White was in jail where he joked that “jail is the best hotel [he’s] ever been in."
Defense attorney Angie Coggins worked to counter that and in cross examinations, highlighted moments when White purportedly showed remorse like when he told a friend in a taped phone call from jail that “Sam was a very good friend of mine and I did him wrong."
The defense had Dakota’s aunt on the stand discussing his turbulent home life as a child.
They also used testimony from a doctor of psychology who said that given Dakota White’s young age and traumatic upbringing, he could be rehabilitated to some degree and so they argued he should be given the possibility of parole.
The trial for Poss' second convicted killer, Brandon Warren, began the week after White's.
Warren was the only person the defense called to the stand, and he testified for over an hour.
It took the jurors two hours to find Warren guilty on all counts and he was sentenced to life in prison without parole the same afternoon.
Poss was reported missing on Oct. 15, 2016 and his body was found days later in the woods.
The same day his body was found, White and Warren were arrested and charged with Poss' death.
In January 2017, Warren entered a not-guilty plea for the charges against him.
In February 2017, White and his attorney declined to enter a plea, so the judge at the time entered a not guilty plea for him.
Poss' killing was the city of Perry's first homicide since 2008.