Thursday, Dec 12, 2013
Franklin County Man Re-Sentenced for Attempted Murder
BENTON -- A Franklin County man walked out of court Friday with the maximum sentence for slashing a woman's throat during a robbery.
Antonio Smith, 22, was re-sentenced to 30 years in prison. He and another man, Jacob Bohannon, 21, were convicted of robbing a Sesser woman three years ago, slashing her throat, and leaving her to die.
Neither man seemed to show much remorse in court as Smith was handed his final sentence.
"It's the best thing that could have happened today, and it happened and we're thankful for that," said the victim's son, Will Zettler.
The Franklin County State's Attorney at the time described how Susan Zettler was brutally attacked in broad daylight after she welcomed the two men into her home to use the phone.
"At that time they stole the purse and I believe also the car keys, and then Antonio Smith reached down and grabbed Mrs. Zettler's hair, pulled her head back, and slit her throat, and then they fled the scene," explained former Franklin County State's Attorney Tom Dinn in a 2010 interview.
Will has sat in the courthouse many times waiting for justice to be served for his mother.
"You're thankful for the fact that she healed, that's she's healthy, that she's still here. That's she's still around, that's the important thing," he insisted.
Over the last few years, four of the five charges have been dropped against Smith except one. On Friday, he received the maximum sentence for attempted murder.
"Thirty years isn't enough, death wouldn't be enough," insisted Will. "You know, watching them tortured wouldn't be enough for me, but you know, I don't get to decide justice. The justice system does and, you know, they got the most that they could get and that's all that we could ask for,"
Smith will join Bohannon, who is already serving 25 years for the crime at Menard Correctional Center. It may not be as much time as the Zettler family had hoped for, but Will says he's just thankful the two are behind bars.
"It's a long haul, you know, we'll be here again I'm sure with the other defendant, but you know, like I said before, at least today the good guys won and he got the most he could get," said Will.
Smith was also ordered to pay the Zettler family more than $45,000 for medical bills. Both men have the right to appeal.
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