Maryanne Atkins was sixteen years old when she fatally shot a man in 2016. According to Maryanne Atkins the man she shot and killed raped her when she was sleeping however the prosecutors believe it was a cold blooded murder who would pose with the weapon on Facebook after the murder which was committed when she was sitting in the victims car. This teen killer who had a brutal upbringing would ultimately convicted of murder and sentenced to nineteen years in prison
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A 19-year-old Seattle area woman was sentenced Thursday to 19 years and 3 months in prison for the 2016 murder of a man she intended to rob.
Maryanne Atkins pleaded guilty Dec. 3, 2018 to one count of second-degree murder and one count of second-degree unlawful firearm possession, after she was charged with the murder of Emmanuel Gondo on Feb. 24, 2016. Atkins was 16 years old at the time, Gondo was 21.
In a King County courtroom benches filled with over 40 witnesses including the family and friends of the victim, Emmanuel Gondo, and the 86-year-old former neighbor of Atkins, Cherie Ferguson, who spoke on her behalf. Atkins’ attorney held her trembling hand as the judgment was delivered.
Judge Marshall Ferguson deliberated before the court the defense for Atkins, but ultimately came to the conclusion that her traumatic life as a sexual abuse survivor and neglected child didn’t provide a sufficient enough defense for the crime she committed. He also said the lies and denials she told during trial weighed on his decision.
The defense had argued for a reduced sentence based on the immaturity of the defendant because of her troubled youth, in line with a decision by the Washington Supreme Court that demanded youth be taken into consideration when sentencing.
“When teenagers are backed into a corner, they lie,” he said, but added the “cruelty of the lies she told,” that denigrated Gondo’s character, went beyond anything attributable to youth.
“The unwillingness of the defense to call her out on her lies and manipulation undermine her rehabilitation,” prosecuting attorney Jessica Berliner told the court.
Prosecutors argued that any self-defense was false, and that the robbery which led to the murder was planned, based on messages from Atkins to a friend that Gondo was an “easy lick,” or an easy person to rob. Because of this, they argued, Atkins’ trauma as a child was no excuse for the way she shot Gondo.
Both sides, and the judge, acknowledged promise for Atkins’ rehabilitation. With the prosecutors’ recommended sentence, Atkins would be released from prison in her late 30s, over 20 years since her first day in juvenile detention in 2016.
Gondo’s family’s pastor, George Everett, spoke to the court, telling the judge that the decision made would affect how his community thought of the place they had come to, to escape civil war.
“What will our children learn, from what has happened to one of them,” Everett said. “Will it be maybe because you’re from Africa or you don’t speak the language as much as the people speak it, stuff can be fabricated or your life does not matter.”
The defense argued early during the sentencing that they had provided evidence of juveniles thinking and acting differently than adults, especially when confronted with dangerous situations.
Atkins at one point during the trial accused Gondo of raping her before she shot him, a claim that Mother Jones reported in an article likening the case to the Cyntoia Brown clemency.
Atkins’ attorney Colleen O’Connor alluded to evidence provided during the trial that Atkins’ trauma from childhood affected her thinking and the way she reacted. Two different psychologists interviewed her and both opined that her life with an abusive father, neglectful mother and living on the streets led to her “perception that her life was in danger the night of the murder,” court documents said.
One psychologist said he found Atkins convincing when she told her about Gondo raping her, court documents said.
The defense ultimately withdrew the testimony from the psychologists, and Atkins wrote in a document that she “intentionally” shot Gondo while robbing him.
Cherie Ferguson spoke to the court and confirmed the abuse Atkins received from her father when she was about 10 years old, living in Everett.
“I know the hell she went through,” Cherie Ferguson told SeattlePI. “She was troubled and acted out, and it led to this.
“If she gets that sentence, she’s got a snowball’s chance in hell.”
Atkins was sentenced to spend the next two decades in the Washington Corrections Center for Women in Purdy, Washington. She has 30 days from March 21 to appeal the sentence.
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Seattle police say a 16-year-old girl posted photos of herself on Facebook posing with a 9 mm handgun she used to “coldly” kill a man in his car in the Rainier Valley.
Maryanne Marie Atkins has been charged as an adult with first-degree murder in the fatal shooting of 21-year-old Emmanuel Gondo on Feb. 23, according to King County prosecutors.
Atkins, who had outstanding warrants and had repeatedly run away from foster placement, apparently killed Gondo after deciding to rob him, charging papers say. She is being held in the Maleng Regional Justice Center in Kent in lieu of $1 million bail.
Evidence in the case suggests “the defendant coldly shot a man in the head while he was seated in his car and then robbed him of his money and cellphone,” Senior Deputy Prosecutor Jessica Berliner wrote in charging papers. “She also appears to have taken the firearm she used to kill him and kept it for the following two months. A review of her Facebook messages in the weeks after the murder reflect no concern or remorse for her actions.”
After Gondo failed to pick up his girlfriend from work on Feb. 23 and didn’t respond to phone calls, the woman and her two siblings went looking for him. They found Gondo slumped over the steering wheel of his black Jaguar just before 3 p.m. the next day, near 33rd Avenue South and South Holly Street, say the charges.
Gondo’s brother told detectives that a few days before the shooting a friend had introduced him and his brother to a girl, according to charging documents. That girl brought a friend — Atkins — over to the brother’s apartment on Feb. 22, and the group hung out together that night, say the charges.
The following evening, Feb. 23, the brothers and the two girls were together in Gondo’s car. After Gondo dropped off the other girl and his brother, he was alone with Atkins, charging papers say. He made his last phone call at 10:48 p.m., say the charges.
The brother told detectives Gondo regularly carried large sums of cash and had $3,000 in $100 bills on him the first night the group had hung out together.
According to the charges, Atkins sent Facebook messages before the shooting, indicating Gondo was “a fat … lick for racks thang and car” — street slang for a robbery (‘lick”) of money (“racks”) and a gun (“thang”). In messages sent after the shooting, Atkins suggested to one friend that what she had done would make the news, say the charges.
On Feb. 27, Atkins posted a photo of herself on Facebook, pointing a gun at the camera, the charges say.
Following Atkins’ arrest last week at a house in Federal Way, police searched the residence and found a 9 mm Smith & Wesson handgun with a wood grip in the room where Atkins had been staying, according to the charges. The gun belonged to Gondo, police say.
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