GRETNA, La. – The man convicted of gunning down a father and son inside their Metairie home two years while on an auto-burglary spree will spend the rest of his life in prison.
Before handing down the sentence that came without the possibility of parole, Judge Raymond Steib of the 24th Judicial District Court told Dexter Allen, 19, he showed no emotion other than anger during his trial and said he saw “no remorse.”
“This was a complete tragedy for our family,” said Elizabeth Pence, the wife and mother of the victims. “We feel justice has been served.”
Allen was convicted of second-degree murder and 19 counts of simple burglary in the shooting deaths of 56-year-old David Pence and 25-year-old Nicholas Pence, who were in the living room of their home when they were killed with blasts from a shotgun late April 22, 2015.
Steib told Allen he watched him as prosecutors played a recording of the 911 call Elizabeth Pence made after she found her husband and son shot. He told Allen he was stunned that he showed “no emotion.”
"At no time has this court seen Mr. Allen shown any emotion other than anger. There has been no remorse,” Steib told Allen. “How you cannot feel for the family is cold."
Steib then turned to the Pence family. “Words cannot express the sorrow we feel for your loss.”
Allen told his family he loved them as he was escorted from the courtroom after his sentence was handed down in a courtroom that was closely watched by at least a half-dozen officers.
On Thursday, Tara Pence testified that she slept for just four hour a night the first eight months after her father and brother were killed, The New Orleans Advocate reported.
She lamented not being able to have a father and brother to experience major life milestones with her “because a monster thought a purse and iPhone were worth more than their lives.”
Allen's grandmother said Friday her grandson is not a “monster” and that the family plans to file an appeal as soon as possible
The night of the shooting, Assistant District Attorneys Seth Shute and Rachel Africk alleged, Allen drove to Metiaire in an SUV he’s believed to have stolen earlier in the day in New Orleans.
At the Pence home, he eyed a car in the driveway but walked inside to steal a purse on the kitchen counter.
For some reason, Allen fatally shot David Pence as he slept in a recliner. Nicholas Pence was shot as he ran into the living room after he heard the shotgun blast.
“We still don’t know why he came in and shot Dave and Nicholas. It’s senseless. It doesn’t make any sense,” Elizabeth Pence said. “I had $10 in my purse. So, at the end, that means David’s life was worth $5 and Nick’s life was worth $5. What a waste.”
Haraquon Degruy, Allen’s former girlfriend, is charged with two counts of being a principal to second-degree murder and 19 counts of simple burglary in the Pence killing.
Her trial is set for May.