Rodolfo Godinez was sentenced to more than 200 years in prison Thursday for his part in the execution-style murders of three college-bound friends in a New Jersey schoolyard.
State Superior Court Judge Michael Ravin followed the state’s sentencing request and handed Godinez the consecutive life sentences plus 20 years and stated that the murders were done by “a mind diseased.”
As previously reported, Godinez, one of six defendants was found guilty in May for the 2007 murders of the three Newark, New Jersey college students.
Defendant Rodolfo Godinez was found guilty on all 17 counts against him including murder, felony murder, attempted murder, robbery, conspiracy to commit robbery, and weapons charges related to possession of a machete and handgun.
Five other men are awaiting trial for the August 7, 2007 murders of Dashon Harvey, Iofemi Hightower and Terrance Aeriel when the students, who had ties to Delaware State University, were lined up and killed execution style at a local school yard.
According to The Associated Press, Ravin also called Godinez, a 27-year-old Nicaraguan immigrant, “a menace” and referred to the “monstrousness of what happened in a place where, by day, one would hear the laughter of children at play.”
Before Ravin pronounced sentence, a procession of family members spoke about victims Terrance Aeriel, Iofemi Hightower and Dashon Harvey.
The fourth victim, a woman whose identity is being withheld, survived being cut with a machete and shot in the head to testify against Godinez also spoke her mind before sentencing.
The last to speak was a woman who survived the attacks and in chilling testimony at Godinez’ trial described being sexually assaulted, slashed with a machete and shot in the head.
“Y’all left me for dead, but I’m still here and I just graduated (from college)” said the woman.
She then turned to Judge Ravin and asked, “Are you going to inform us when he dies? Because if you do, I think I’m going to have a party.”
The survivor, who was 19 at the time of the attacks, identified two other suspects from her hospital bed, leading to the capture of all six within two weeks of the murders.
Finally, the punishment fits the crime.