FORT WORTH, Texas - A juvenile court jury in Tarrant County has sentenced a 14-year-old girl to 25 years behind bars for murdering her 14-year-old friend.
The girl, who was 13 years old at the time of the stabbing, was charged as a juvenile for the murder of Nylah Lightfoot, 14, who was stabbed at an apartment complex in south Fort Worth.
FOX 4 is not identifying the attacker or showing her relatives' faces because she is a juvenile.
Prosecutors described the girl on trial as being unable to control her rage, pointing to her history of getting into fights in two other states before her family moved to Texas.
They asked the jury to send her away for the maximum allowed: 40 years in prison.
The defense asked the jury to balance the testimony and consider her young age. They also told the jury to consider the element of act of passion, which if agreed upon, lowers the prison sentence allowed.
After deliberating for about an hour and a half, the jury decided on a 25-year sentence for the 14-year-old.
Just ahead of closing arguments, Nylah's mother told the jury how difficult life has been since her daughter was murdered.
"Some days, I can't go in her room because I don't see nothing but my baby. Hoping when I walk in there, she'll be lying across her bed listening to music like I left her," Nylah's mother, Anntoinette Carter, said. “When they told me it was you of all people, it hurt. She treated you like the sister that she didn’t have. You took my child. My only girl. And it put a hole in my heart.”
There has been a lot of tension involving the family of the defendant.
One of her relatives was thrown out of court on Friday and warned not to return after he reportedly made some threatening statements outside the courtroom.
The girl will remain in juvenile detention until her nineteenth birthday. Once she turns 19, a judge will decide if she will be transferred to adult prison to finish out her sentence or possibly be released on parole.
The girl did tear up after the verdict was read and as the judge explained what happens from here. Her lawyer said she’s moving forward with a positive attitude.