OLATHE, Kan. (WDAF) — Family of a 17-year-old murder victim said they’re a step closer to justice after a judge sentenced the man who pulled the trigger.
Raymond Cherry faces life with a chance of parole after more than two decades behind bars.
Meantime, Ben Workman’s mom, Amy Workman, continues her march for justice.
“All three of them should pay the same price,” Amy said.
Workman is talking about Cherry, Alan Hicks and Juriah Jones.
On Thursday, a Judge sentenced 28-year-old Cherry to life in prison for murdering Ben. He could have a chance at parole after serving 25 years.
“I just feel grateful my Ben got justice, and his life mattered,” Amy said.
“We’re very happy with the results,” Johnson County District Attorney Steve Howe said.
The judge also sentenced Cherry to five and a half years for aggravated robbery.
If Cherry gets paroled on the murder charge, he would then serve time for the robbery.
“The reason why I think he ran a consecutive sentence to the life sentence is because there was just no reason to shoot an unarmed individual,” Howe said. “You had already robbed him, you had already taken what you wanted, and then you just gratuitously shot an individual for no reason.”
The other two suspects, Hicks and Jones, also face a first-degree murder charge.
Jones, 21, was a juvenile at the time of the crime and is being tried as an adult.
In a statement to FOX4, her attorney said in part, “Ms. Jones although having not had her case resolved yet has cooperated and testified regarding what she knew. We continue to work with the prosecutors in an effort to resolve Ms. Jones matter in an endeavor to end any further pain this episode has caused.”
“The pain is unbearable to lose a child to a violent murder,” Amy said. “Especially knowing that it was planned to take his life for no reason.”
The case may not be final, though. Cherry’s attorney told FOX4 they plan to appeal the original conviction for several reasons. A key point, they claim their client was denied a speedy trial.
You can read the full statement from Cherry’s attorney, Dr. Albert F Harris III, below:
“We thought sentencing went quite well. Mr. Cherry maintains his innocence. We hold the position that a number of errors were made by the court, all of which are appealable, that led to Mr. Cherry’s incorrect conviction. These issues include the fact that Mr. Cherry was incarcerated for four years without a trial in contravention of his constitutional right to a speedy trial, seriously damaging his ability to provide exonerating evidence. We will be appealing all these issues, with a new notice of appeal scheduled for filing on Monday. That said, Mr. Cherry composed himself professionally during sentencing in the face of some rather aggressive statements by family members of the victim. Additionally, the Judge gave the standard sentences on all charges, with the sole outlier being the sentence for count 2 being ordered to run after the other sentences, which effectively negates the time for which Mr. Cherry already has credit, making his actual sentence a Hard 25 years. Mr. Cherry remains in good spirits and is hopeful that the appellate system will vindicate him.”
Hicks and Jones’ cases are pending.