November 3, 2011: Two South Carolina women collapse after receiving life sentences for the death of a 3-year-old girl in their care. Erica Mae Butts and Shanita Latrice Cunningham were reportedly in a relationship when they severely abused goddaughter Serenity Richardson, who was visiting with them for two weeks. Butts and Cunningham pleaded guilty to murder in Richardson’s death. According to Elizabeth Gordon, assistant managing solicitor for Charleston County, “It is nearly impossible for words to accurately describe what these women did to that poor little girl. They beat her repeatedly both with a belt and with plastic coat hangers. You can see the outlines of the strikes on this child’s body. There is not one area of this child’s body that was unharmed except for the soles of her feet.” This video shows Butts and Cunningham screaming and falling to the floor after the judge reads their sentences.
June 28, 2007: Dexter Johnson, 19, flies into a rage in a Houston courtroom after being sentenced to death. Johnson was one of five people — four men and a woman — who carjacked Maria Aparece and her boyfriend, Huy Ngo in 2005. Threatening the victims with guns, Johnson and the four others drove Aparece and Ngo around, forcing them to withdraw money. Then, prosecutors said Johnson raped Aparece in the back of the car while Ngo was forced to listen. Then, Ngo and Aparece were led into the woods, where they were shot execution-style. Prosecutors said Johnson shot Aparece in the top of the head, and described him as a cold, calculating killer who enjoyed committing the heinous crimes.