“I have sat through some sad sentencings and this is one of the most sad ones that I have been associated with. It is so tragic. Most people who are involved in drugs tend to hurt people who are also involved in drugs or involved with crime,” Spaeth said. “Mr. Jabbari stole a completely innocent and pure person’s life as a result of his actions and the decisions he made.”
Prosecutors said it comes down to the fact that Jabbari thought Burrell was somebody else and the person he thought he was may have had something that belonged to Jabbari — a backpack.
Burrell’s family told the judge about Benjamin and many letters from friends, family and coworkers were also sent to the Spaeth.
They were angry and grief-stricken, but also offered forgiveness as they stood a few feet away from Jabbari.
Paul Burrell, Benjamin’s father, said after the shock of learning their son was dead, they begin to learn there was no motive or reason.
“We came to find out Benjamin had not gotten into an altercation, he was not involved in any criminal activity. He was, in fact, senselessly shot and killed in front of his apartment returning home from work,” Paul Burrell said. “Our hearts are broken.”
The father read some comments from Benjamin’s friends recalling his work ethic and great sense of humor.
“Benjamin is gone from this world because of you and your actions.” Paul Burrell said. Then turning to the Jabbari, he said. “I forgive you for what you have done.”
Teresa Burrell, Benjamin’s mother said her son graduated from college with a degree in philosophy and stopped by the house often for dinner after work. She will never hear his voice again or have anymore photos of her “sweet” son she said.
“Benjamin’s death was senseless, she said. “Nothing is going to bring him back.”
“To the defendant, I don’t hate him, I don’t want him to burn in hell or rot in prison. What I do want is for him to be remorseful, repentant and to realize what he has done., what he has taken,” she said, urging Jabbari to grow up make better choices “I hope and I pray that he chooses better the Dec. 19, 2020.”
At the time of Jabbari’s indictment he was the DeSoto County, Fla., jail, where he had been booked on Dec. 30 for drug and weapons charges. Fairfield detectives were able to use jail recordings in Florida and the weapon Jabbari had at the time of his arrest to tie him to Burrell’s shooting, according to prosecutors.
Burrell’s family and the prosecutors commended Fairfield detectives for the investigation and solving the case.