A Newark gangmember who hacked at three college-bound students with a machete before his cohort shot them execution-style was sentenced Thursday to 212 years in prison.
Alexander Alfaro, 20, was convicted last month of the robbery murders of Terrance Aeriel, Dashon Harvey and Iofemi Hightower in a schoolyard in August 2007.
During the sentencing, the judge focused on testimony about Alfaro slashing so violently at one victim that the machete became embedded in her skull.
“The machete-wielding Alexander Alfaro hacked her head and hacked her body. . . The force he used to hack her skull with the machete was such that the blade was embedded in her skull and he had to pry the blade out. That’s the evidence. That’s the evidence of what he did. That’s how Alfaro sent her to the after-life,” state Superior Court Judge Michael Ravin said, according to the Newark Star-Ledger.
Alfaro, who was 16 at the time of the murders, is the third person to receive consecutive life sentences in the case. He must serve 180 years before he is eligible for parole.
The lone survivor of the chilling attacks, Natasha Aeriel, provided emotional and disturbing testimony throughout the trial.
The victims – all students at or heading to Delaware State University – were held at gunpoint and forced to kneel against the wall before being shot. Aeriel graduated Delaware State last year.