LAYTONVILLE, Calif. (AP) — A California teen who stabbed to death his friend and another during a rampage in the home that took him in was sentenced to 71 years to life in prison.
The sentencing judge said she intends for 19-year-old Talen Barton to remain in prison for the rest of his life, the Santa Rosa Press-Democrat reported. Mendocino County Judge Ann Moorman said Tuesday that state prison officials will notify her if he ever becomes eligible for parole so she can argue against his release.
“I’ll see to it you never see the light of day,” Moorman told Barton.
“That’s great,” Barton said, flashing a thumb’s up even though he was shackled.
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Barton pleaded guilty to stabbing to death a 17-year-old friend and the friend’s father in July in their Laytonville, Calif., home about 160 miles north of San Francisco. Barton also seriously injured two others in the house. Barton told psychologists he killed because he wanted to know what it was like to die.
Barton lived in the family’s home for two years after his friend convinced his parent to take in the troubled teen.
Barton pleaded guilty to avoid the death penalty, the paper reported.
On the night of the attack, Barton took a 17-inch knife from the kitchen and went into the bedroom where his 17-year-old friend Teo Palmieri was sleeping. Barton placed his hand over Palmieri’s mouth and slashed his throat. Barton killed Palmieri’s father as he rushed into the bedroom to check on the commotion.
Barton also stabbed Palmieri’s mother and his uncle, who was visiting from Canada at the time.
Detectives said Barton showed no emotion when he was arrested after calling 911 to report the stabbings.
“He is an absolute monster,” Detective Clint Wyant said in his investigative summary.