Daniel Perry faces 2 years to life in prison; the judge will decide on Wednesday morning
Rideshare driver, Sgt. Daniel Perry, convicted of killing Garrett Foster, an armed protester in downtown Austin, will wait another day to hear his sentence. Following six hours of testimony from family members and experts, Judge Clifford Brown stated that he will announce Perry’s sentence Wednesday morning at 10:00 a.m.
Charlie Baird, a former Travis County District Court judge, explains that “once guilty is established, the judge can look at any number of factors to determine what he believes is the appropriate punishment for the particular crime.” One factor was the testimony of Whitney Mitchell, Foster’s life partner. Though unmarried, Mitchell considered Foster her husband and emphasized how instrumental he was in her life, even helping her handle daily tasks. Baird emphasizes that her testimony helped the court understand the crime’s impact on the life of a specific individual.
Perry’s defense brought in witnesses such as Ronald Wilson and Traveon Napper, who served in the military with Perry. Lawyers questioned Napper over Zoom as he is stationed in Germany. Both denied that Perry was a racist. Wilson explained that sharing social media memes is “a stress relief mechanism.”
The defense also called witness Greg Hupp, a forensic psychologist. Hupp claimed that Perry may suffer from PTSD and show signs of Autism. However, Baird warned that Perry’s psychological condition could increase the possibility of committing more crimes in the future.
Rachel Perry, Perry’s mother, also took the stand, crying as she told the court that her intention was only to protect herself and not to shoot someone. The defense is requesting a ten-year sentence, while the state is seeking at least a 25-year sentence. The defense has asked the court to consider sudden passion, hoping Perry will receive a minimum 2-year sentence.
Baird explains that the typical homicide offense sentence ranges from five years in prison to life imprisonment and a $10,000 fine. The defense hopes that Perry will serve his sentence, go home and rejoin his family. Isabella Basco covers social media, where you can find the latest updates on the trial and its aftermath.
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