Brave Impact Statements From Kids: Mineola Sex Ring Trial - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News


Brave Impact Statements From Kids: Mineola Sex Ring Trial

"If your heart is broken that's okay. If you are mad. That's okay. If your stomach is in knots that is okay. You should feel that way. The sad fact is you, perfect strangers care more about these children than their own mother," said Smith County Assistant District Attorney Joe Murphy during closing arguments.

Feelings that most in the courtroom Thursday understood.

It took just minutes for a Smith County jury to convict Shauntel Mayo on charges of engaging in organized criminal activity and two counts of sexual performance of a child. It also only took them minutes to sentence her to life in prison, plus another 40 years. She was also fined $30,000.

"They are sitting there the most beautiful angels ever born and you couldn't even say I'm sorry," said Margaret Cantrell, Foster Mother during victim impact statements.

During the whole trial Shauntel never offered a defense.

After the sentence and charge she turned in an appeal. She said she wasn't happy with "The way that it went."

Then the victims in this case got to testify again and tell Shauntel what they thought. 

"Not one time did you ever think of them? The way it went? Your cold hearted and everything they gave you you deserve," said foster mother Margaret Cantrell.

"Remember that time I gave you that stuffed turtle for your birthday that was because I loved you. When I testified a couple of days ago that was because I loved you and I believe that they will take better care of you in prison than you've been taking care of yourself," said the victim, Shauntel's sister, now age 9.

They went up there at once, but each took turns telling Shauntel to her face the hurt she had caused them.

"I just hope you go back to your cell and ask God to forgive you over and over and over and think of what you did," said her daughter, now age 11, before she broke down in tears crying. 

"I never knew what it was like to have a mom and know I do," said her son, victim, now age 9.

One of the jurors told me kids are supposed to look up to parents not be abused by them.

"I believe she got everything that she deserved. If it would have been up to some of the jurors she would have got a lot more. Anybody that can make your kids go through this," said juror Vernon Thornton, "She's not no mother. You just don't do your kids that way. That's about the nicest thing I can say about her."

We also caught up with Assistant District Attorney Joe Murphy.

"It's good to know especially for those little kids that they are not going to have to deal with her anymore. It was very difficult I believe for everyone in that courtroom to sit through, but we think the jury returned a just an appropriate verdicts and that's all we can ask for," said Murphy.

Judge Jack Skeen granted a motion to accumulate Mayo's sentences. She will be eligible for parole in 25 years.

Now as for the other five defendants still awaiting trial, the District Attorney's office wouldn't tell us who is next, just that the next defendant's trial will be set within the next 30 days. Patrick Kelly, Shelia Sones, Jimmy Sones, Dennis Pittman, and Rebecca Pittman are all awaiting trial.

Danielle Capper, Reporting


Powered by Frankly