In a surprise turn of events, the man accused of murdering a gas station owner in August 2007 pleaded guilty Thursday and was sentenced to life in prison plus an additional five years.
Carronis Hurst, 20, pleaded guilty to charges of murder, aggravated assault, theft by receiving and possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony. Hurst shot and killed 46-year-old Aslam Muhammed in August after robbing the Pure Food Mart the victim owned.
Assistant District Attorney Layla Zon said her office was told Thursday morning that Hurst would be entering a guilty plea.
She asked Judge Horace Johnson Jr. to sentence Hurst to life plus 25 years, but in the end he went with the Assistant Public Defender Teri Smith's recommendation of life plus five years.
Under the sentencing, Hurst must serve 30 years before he is eligible for parole.
Zon spoke with the victim's family before the plea. She said they were satisfied with sentencing.
When Hurst appeared in court for the sentencing, he was reportedly wearing county issued flip-flops on which he had "Thug Life" and "Trillville" Zon said Trillville is an Atlanta gansta rap group whose lyrics endorse violence.
Hurst was arrested less than a week after the murder when his father told the Newton County Sheriff's Department Hurst was the killer. Investigators were able to apprehend Hurst at his residence on Mote Road.
Hurst is the second murderer to have pleaded guilty in the past four months in Newton County. In October Lanny Barnes also pleaded guilty on charges of murder. He was sentence to life without parole.