Felon to spend life in prison for killing New Mexico officer
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — A felon convicted of killing an Albuquerque police officer during a 2015 traffic stop will spend the rest of his life in prison after being told by a state district judge Tuesday that he has shown no remorse for his actions.
Family and friends of Officer Daniel Webster packed the courtroom as Davon Lymon was sentenced and then led away by authorities. He was convicted last month of first-degree murder and other charges stemming from the officer’s death.
Prosecutors had argued during the trial that Lymon — whose prior convictions include manslaughter, fraud and forgery — chose to take Webster’s life because he was a felon in possession of a firearm and did not want to return to prison.
Lymon was initially pulled over on suspicion of having a stolen license plate on the motorcycle he was riding. The traffic stop had lasted barely more than a minute before shots were fired.
Lymon told the judge he shot Webster in self-defense, even though the officer had already holstered his gun and was beginning to handcuff him. Police lapel video of that moment was played for jurors during the trial.
Judge Neil Candelaria told Lymon he wasn’t entitled to a claim of self-defense under the law.
“It is apparent that the acts in case demonstrate a callous indifference toward human life and certainly a callous indifference and lack of respect to an individual whose purpose and job was to protect the rest of us,” the judge said.
Candelaria went on to say that Lymon’s statement to the court Tuesday was “totally absent” of remorse.
The life sentence will run consecutively with time Lymon must serve for other charges related to the officer’s killing. He also was previously sentenced in federal court to nearly four decades in prison on firearms-related charges and other crimes.
The officer’s widow, Michelle, told Lymon he lost any chance at regaining his humanity the day he killed her husband. While he took away her soul mate, she said she has become stronger than Lymon could ever hope to be.
“I have gained friends that were forged in the fire of utter heartbreak, the kind of friendship that is unbreakable. That is something you will never know or understand because you are evil and incapable of feeling anything that is selfless,” she said.
Describing him as a selfish menace and a monster, she called him out for giggling and smirking during the trial. She sternly shared her distain for him with the courtroom, saying had Webster not got in his way that October night, Lymon would have gone on to hurt someone else given his criminal history.
“You have no regard for human life,” she said.
Lymon showed no emotion as Webster’s family spoke.
Attorney Gary Mitchell argued again Tuesday that Lymon, who is black, may have been especially fearful about the police encounter because of his race.
Prosecutors have said Lymon shot at the officer six times and ran to a shed in a nearby neighborhood where he was holed up when SWAT officers, including a K-9 unit, found him and took him into custody.
Webster, 47, was a highly decorated officer and former Army Ranger who served in Bosnia, Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere. After his military service, he joined the Albuquerque police force.