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Suspect in deadly beating posted to Snapchat sentenced to 30 years in prison

(KSFY)
Published: Aug. 25, 2017 at 12:15 PM CDT
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The Sioux Falls teen who admitted to fatally beating another teen in an incident that was later posted on social media has been sentenced to 50 years, 20 years suspended. Wilson Hughes will serve 30 years in prison.

Hughes was sentenced Friday.

Back in June, Hughes changed his plea to guilty in the 2016 beating death of 18-year-old Arick Strauser.

Hughes was one of multiple teens accused of beating Strauser. A video of the incident was then posted to Snapchat. Prosecutors said Hughes punched Strauser about 10 to 12 times in the face and then kicked him in the ribs after he fell to the ground.

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The Sioux Falls teen who admitted to fatally beating another teen in an incident that was later posted on social media is facing a sentencing hearing to determine his fate.

Seventeen-year-old Wilson Hughes appeared in court Friday. Back in June, Hughes changed his plea to guilty in the 2016 beating death of 18-year-old Arick Strauser.

Testimony began with Dr. Antoinette Kavanaugh, a forensic clinical psychologist who was brought in to help determine Hughes' development and state of mind to help the court determine an appropriate sentence.

Kavanaugh gave a detailed background of Hughes' history, included past physical abuse, poverty, and lack of supervision throughout his childhood.

Strauser's mother testified after Kavanaugh. She gave an emotional testimony in which she said other people who have faced similar circumstances did not end up "murdering somebody."

"Free will is a choice in this life," Amiee Strauser said. "You want to have a life, I'm sure my son wanted to have a life too."

Strauser's testimony was clearly directed at Hughes, speaking to him specifically about the night her son was killed. She said she watched the video posted to Snapchat "countless" times, and laid out alleged details from the video.

"You left him for dead, and treated him like trash," Strauser said.

Strauser laid out other explicit details from the Snapchat video her 12-year-old child shared with her that night of the incident. She said Hughes beat Arick Strauser to the point where he was unrecognizable, and kicked him several times while he was on the ground. She said Hughes ran over Strauser with a bicycle three times, and "had a friend piss in his face as he lay there dying."

Strauser asked the judge to give Hughes the maximum sentence allowable by law.

Hughes' sentencing will continue into Friday afternoon. He faces up to 30 years in prison.