Jared Eugene Wilson was sentenced Thursday in a Smith County court to life in prison for the first-degree murder of Thomas Glen Wilson.
Jared Wilson, 31, of Houston, a known gang member, convicted drug dealer and pimp was found guilty of shooting Thomas Wilson at a Tyler hotel on July 5, 2016. In addition to the life sentence, he received a $10,000 fine.
In closing arguments the prosecution laid out paperwork from Jared Wilson's previous convictions and encouraged the jury to sentence Wilson to life in prison.
Pictures of Thomas Wilson, a 20-year Army combat veteran, a father and a family man were shown to the jury during closing arguments of the trial. Prosecutor Kenneth Biggs said the pictures should be in frames not exhibit numbers in a murder trial.
"This is what Jared Wilson stole from us," Biggs said. "He stole a grandfather from Emma. He stole a father from Sarah. He stole a friend to the community and an all-around good guy."
Before ending the closing arguments, the prosecution told the jury Jared Wilson was proud to be a gangster and not a remorseful man.
Biggs said what Jared Wilson did in Smith County was vulgar and offensive to the community.
Defense attorney Clifton Roberson told the jury Jared Wilson didn't go looking for Thomas Wilson because he was brought to the hotel. He also said Thomas Wilson went after Jared and used profanity toward him.
Roberson said if the jury didn't think this was a case of sudden passion they should give Jared Wilson a 20-year sentence.
Mike Wilson, Thomas Wilson's brother, gave a victim's impact statement to Jared Wilson. Mike Wilson told the convicted killer that he spent 10 years in prison.
"You are no worse than me," Mike Wilson said. "By the grace of God, I'm not where you are."
Mike Wilson spoke to Jared as a reformed prisoner and gave him advice on how he could still do good from inside the prison walls.
"Me and my church have been praying for you," Mike Wilson said. "I have no animosity in my heart toward you. I forgive you, and I'm going to work on the love part. I'm going to reach out to you."
Mike Wilson hugged Jared Wilson's family members on his way back to his seat in the courtroom.
Jury selection began Monday and the trial began Tuesday. The defense and prosecution rested Wednesday afternoon before the sentencing phase began.