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‘You Didn’t Break Us,' Family Of Murdered Woman Help Police Arrest Her Killer
Relatives of A’Tierra Westbrook confronted her killer, Isaiah Demetrius McClain, in court years after they helped police arrest him.
The family of a California woman who was shot more than 15 times confronted her killer as he was sentenced to spend life behind bars.
A’Tierra "A'Ti" Westbrook was fatally shot as she left her home in 2015 to go to work. The 21-year-old was struck by multiple rounds of gunfire while driving causing her to crash her car into a pole.
For several years, Westbrook’s killing went unsolved but now her killer and his accomplice have faced justice.
Solano County Superior Court Judge E. Bradley Nelson sentenced Isaiah Demetrius McClain, 33, to 25 years to life, with the possibility of parole, on Friday, local outlet The Reporter reports. He took a plea deal in November, admitting to first-degree murder. Richard Edward Hill III, 44, pleaded guilty the same month to being an accessory to the crime. He was sentenced on Friday to three years in prison.
Chief Deputy District Attorney Paul Sequiera had previously claimed that McClain shot Westbrook "15 to 17 times” as “revenge” for the death of one of his family members, according to The Reporter.
However, during impact statements on Friday, Westbrook’s mom, Senika Sheilds-Levias, said her daughter didn’t know McClain.
“You didn’t break us,” she told her daughter’s killer. “We are here, alive and free … and wishing you nothing but hell in your cell.”
She called him “a cowardly woman killer,” according to The Reporter.
In 2018, Shields-Levias told Oxygen.com that she and other relatives had spent more than a year trying to track down Westbrook’s killer. Westbrook’s aunt Regina Shields-Hailey told Oxygen.com that they set up a Facebook page entitled "Justice for A'Ti," and that they even established their own tip line. She estimated that they received at least two thousand tips.
McClain and Hill were arrested in 2016 and investigators credited Westbrook’s family for helping make the arrests.
“When we come together as a community, we can overcome tragedy,” The Solano County Sheriff’s Office stated in regards to the crack in the case. “Senika Shields-Levias and Detective Ronnie Sefried were brought together under the worst circumstances imaginable.”
Westbrook’s family didn’t just help make arrests in her murder—they also honored her through a spiritual journey. Shields-Levias, Shields-Hailey, and their sister Tiffany Shields undertook a 500-mile pilgrimage at the Camino de Santiago in Spain in 2017, a trip they dubbed “Journey for Healing.”
The family celebrated Westbrook’s birthday on Monday with an Instagram post.
During her impact statement, Shields-Levias said that Monday would have been her daughter’s 28th birthday.
“I can finally tell my baby: Rest in peace,” she said in court, adding that she will always celebrate her daughter’s life. “Her life was cut short.”