Crime - Sacto 911

Woman sentenced to prison term for role in artist’s fatal shooting

Winty Singh of the Sikh Coalition takes a photograph of the artwork of Hassan Alawsi in the office of Dr. Richard Pan, D-Sacramento, at State Capitol in 2014. A judge Friday sentenced Kari Ann Hamilton to 13 years in prison for her role in Alawsi’s slaying in a Home Depot parking lot.
Winty Singh of the Sikh Coalition takes a photograph of the artwork of Hassan Alawsi in the office of Dr. Richard Pan, D-Sacramento, at State Capitol in 2014. A judge Friday sentenced Kari Ann Hamilton to 13 years in prison for her role in Alawsi’s slaying in a Home Depot parking lot. pkitagaki@sacbee.com

Kari Ann Hamilton, the girlfriend of the man serving life in prison for shooting dead an Iraqi artist in a Florin Road parking lot in 2014, will serve 13 years in state prison for her role in the slaying and a home-invasion robbery in the hours after the killing, a Sacramento judge ordered Friday.

Sacramento Superior Court Judge Michael Kenny sentenced Hamilton to 13 years in state prison on multiple counts, including accessory after the fact in connection with the March 16, 2014, slaying of artist Hassan Alawsi, 46, by Jeffrey Michael Caylor as Alawsi returned to his car in the parking of a Home Depot. Alawsi had stopped at the store to buy art supplies ahead of an upcoming exhibition.

Hamilton tearfully pleaded with the judge for mercy so that she can rejoin her 15-year-old son’s life. Hamilton’s young son had accompanied his mother and Caylor to the store that March night and later testified at their trial, identifying photos of the 9 mm Beretta handgun stowed in Hamilton’s handbag and a box of ammunition.

Kenny was unmoved, speaking sternly from the bench.

“Ms. Hamilton was not a passive participant. This was an extraordinary crime spree,” he said, adding a moment later, “This was a crime of extreme violence.”

Jurors in December found Hamilton guilty of accessory to Alawsi’s murder, attempted murder, robbery, burglary while armed with a firearm, and vehicle theft.

Caylor did not know his victim, but had told relatives of his antipathy toward people of Muslim descent, authorities said, citing a business dispute Caylor had with a South Asian immigrant. Alawsi’s sister had accompanied him to the store, but left before the shooting. She was wearing a hijab, a head covering worn by many Muslim women.

Hours after Alawsi was fatally ambushed, Caylor and Hamilton stole a Honda sedan during a Carmichael home-invasion robbery.

The pair were arrested March 17, 2014, in Butte County. Caylor, a former gang member, was convicted of first-degree murder in December and sentenced in February to life in prison without the possibility of parole, plus an additional 50 years and eight months.

Darrell Smith: 916-321-1040, @dvaughnsmith

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