A man convicted in less than 15 minutes for raping and murdering an 8-year-old Florida girl was sentenced to death on Wesdnesday.
The man, Donald Smith, 62, had been found guilty of first-degree murder, kidnapping and rape in the 2013 death of the child, Cherish Perrywinkle.
According to the young girl’s mother, Rayne, Smith had been watching her and her three daughters while they shopped for clothes at a discount store on June 21, 2013. She testified that he noticed her working out a way to pay for the clothes and was waiting outside for them when they left, unable to afford the items. She said Smith offered to take them to a nearby Walmart and make purchases using a gift card.
She was weary but accepted. Rayne then said that after hearing the young girls complain about being hungry, Smith offered to go to a McDonald’s within the store. Cherish followed him and was never seen alive again.
The young girl’s mutilated body was later found in a creek. She had been raped and stranggled, and her injuries appeared to include blunt-force trauma to the back of her head.
Dr. Valerie Rao, the Jacksonville chief medical examiner, testified that Perrywinkle sustained severe injuries and had a "‘totally destroyed anatomy.”
It took her three to five minutes to die from “lack of oxygen to her brain,” Rao said.
Smith, who has a criminal history dating back to the 1970s, was described by defense experts as a psychopath lacking in impulse control. Doctors also described Smith as callous, uncaring, manipulative and without empathy.
His case will automatically be appealed to the Florida Supreme Court.
Fox News’ Frank Miles and The Associated Press contributed to this report.