Trish Bennett, Editor
CIRCLEVILLE – The sentencing of a man convicted of murdering his former girlfriend last February took an even more unpleasant turn Wednesday when the defendant decided to speak on his own behalf.
Trevor A. Teets, 21, was sentenced to a mandatory 15 years to life for the murder of Alicia M. Pentecost-Salyers by Judge P. Randall Knece in Pickaway County Common Pleas Court. He also must serve a mandatory three years for a gun specification in the crime, for a total of 18 years behind bars before he could be considered for parole.
Prior to learning his sentence, however, Teets broke into what county prosecutor Judy Wolford could only describe as a “diatribe.”
“I was frankly shocked at what the defendant had to say,” Wolford said following the hearing. “I’ve never experienced anything like it.”
Teets told the family they should be obligated by their Christian faith to forgive him for the murder of their daughter, and that Alicia, whom he loved, comes to him in his dreams.
He also criticized officers for leaving Salyers’ body lying on the ground while they investigated the shooting last February because he found it painful.
At one point, Teets demanded the victim’s family look at him while he spoke, but Knece broke in, telling him to address the court and not the Salyers family.
Teets continued speaking, but the judge finally cut him off completely, admonishing him for his arrogance and lack of remorse. Knece said a written transcript of the outburst, along with a personal letter from the judge, would be forwarded to the parole board for their information when Teets becomes eligible for a parole hearing in 18 years.
Teets has been held in the Pickaway County Jail since the day of the murder Feb. 1, 2015, outside his apartment at 129 Caroline Court on the south end of the city. In a 911 call played at his trial in November, Teets told the dispatcher he had been arguing with his ex-girlfriend and killed her.
Salyers, 19, had gone to the apartment she once shared with Teets to give him her share of the rent money for the month. She was shot in the head at close range with a shotgun and died where she fell in the parking lot of the apartment complex beside her car.
Teets was convicted following a two-day trial by jury in November on charges of murder, domestic violence and involuntary manslaughter.
The following are transcripts in their entirety of the victim impact statements presented to the court Wednesday by the parents of Alicia M. Pentecost-Salyers:
Victim’s Impact Statement of Tracey Salyers (victim’s father):
In this statement, I’m supposed to express the impact this tragedy has had on me and my family. This would be an insurmountable task, as words could never accurately convey my feelings. I believe in trying to do so, I wouldn’t be able to do it justice.
Instead, I would rather talk about the day my beautiful daughter was born. On March 23, 1995, the most miraculous event in my life happened – my daughter was brought into this world. At that moment, my life changed forever. Little did she know the impact she would have on me for the rest of my life.
I knew I had to become someone I had not been before, someone she could look up to and always count on. I wasn’t a bad person, but a person who was a little self-centered and never really had to be responsible for anyone else. Now I had to be a role model, someone to be respected, not only by her but by others as well.
She taught me to be so much more than I had ever imagined. She made me want to be the best person I could be. She helped me to realize what unconditional love really meant. The greatest gift life can give a man is to make him a father, and for that, I am eternally grateful.
We had our ups and downs through the years, but at the end of the day, she always knew how much she was loved. We never parted ways without telling each other how much we cared.
When Alicia met Trevor, we were very skeptical. He seemed courteous, respectful, and eventually we grew to like him. We took him into our home, accepted him and showed him kindness.
It seems Mr. Teets is a better actor than a human being. On Feb. 2, 2015, my daughter told me she loved me for the last time. Trevor Teets took the light of my life from this world. I will go to my grave carrying the sorrow, pain and the emptiness in my soul. He not only murdered my precious daughter, but he killed the best part of me.
To me, justice could never be served. He will never be able to make up for what he has done. I ask the judge to sentence him to the fullest extent of the law.
Victim Impact State of Cheryl Salyers (victim’s mother):
The holidays are upon us, and it will be the first without our beautiful daughter, Alicia.
Christmas did my heart good to see it through Alicia’s eyes; her smile, the anticipation, the getting her father and I up early because she could not wait to open her stocking and all the presents that would be wrapped around the tree and then some. Tracey and I will never get to experience any of the holidays the same way again.
There is no Christmas or Christmas spirit for me. It is only because I have the spirit and true meaning of Christmas, the birth of my Lord Jesus Christ, that I know there is a Christmas now. I didn’t even have a tree up this year because I couldn’t bear to think there will be nothing under it. I didn’t listen to any Christmas music. I didn’t watch the Christmas movies that were once family traditions. It was Alicia’s and my time at Christmas to watch Emmett Otter and the Jug Band. It was our favorite. This movie was on television this season, and the title alone sent me in tears.
Who would have ever thought 2014 would be her last holiday season?
2015 approached, and I got a call that my aunt in North Carolina was dying. I made arrangements to travel alone to visit with her. I told Alicia I loved her, to be careful and I would see her when I got home. If I only knew that would be the last time I saw her alive.
Trevor, you called my cell phone in regards to Alicia paying her part of the rent. I explained to you I was out of state, and you would have to talk to Alicia or Tracey, but I knew before I left, and you did, too, that she would pay you.
That evening after you called, my cell phone exploded with calls, texts, asking, “What happened to Alicia?” and “Was it true?” I had no idea what they were talking about. One of Alicia’s friends said to me, “What’s going on with Alicia? I heard she just got shot and cops and emergency squads were there.” Imagine, if you will, being a mother, hearing this and being states away from your child.
Everything from there was pretty much a blur. I made the trip back to Ohio alone, not knowing the condition of Alicia. I did not know the destruction you caused until I walked through my father-in-law’s house. Tracey said, “She’s gone.” I said, “Gone where? Where is she?” I kept calling out for Alicia, looking all around, I couldn’t find my child. It was then I saw the look in Tracey’s eyes, dropped to the floor and lost it. A father and husband should never have to tell a wife and mother this kind of news.
I will never again get to experience Alicia’s smile, experience her laughter, look at her beautiful face or watch the tears run down her face when she is sad. To tell her when it was time to take a shower, argue with her about which new outfit to wear or how she should do her hair. I miss her smell, which I still have in some of her clothing that lies by my head nightly. I would give my life to experience the beauty of these things; however, now only pictures provide this. I will never get to experience being a grandparent. Alicia was starting to get her life together. She wanted to go back to school and have a good career and life for herself.
From that moment on, our lives and hearts were murdered. Not only did you murder our daughter, but you murdered and took away from a grandpa, aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, cousins, best friends, family friends, friends and everyone who knew and loved her.
Trevor, I say to you, we took you into each of our homes and made you part of our family. This is how you repay your love that you said you had for our daughter? Is this your way of telling someone you love them? You coward! You sat in our living room telling us you did not want to be like the rest of the people in your family. You wanted to be better than them and wanted more for Alicia and yourself. You said you would never hurt Alicia! Tracey told you if you did one thing to hurt Alicia, you would be buried in the back yard, which is the cemetery. If only Tracey had got to you before law enforcement. You would be buried in that cemetery instead of Alicia.
You should have shot yourself and let her go, but you figured if you couldn’t have her, no one could. You psychopath! Who had any idea you were that way? You had us all fooled! Poor Colin, you murdered his life, too. He will never look up to his Bubba Jay again! How do you feel about that?
I can’t wait until you get sent off to prison. I hope that you never forget the impact you have had on our family and your brother for your entire life, and it drives you crazier than you already are. I can only hope your life will be short and painful. I want you to suffer a slow death that will even be too good for you.
I could go on for days telling you what you have taken from all of us. There will never be enough time to tell you what you have done or the impact you have caused. We will have to deal with everyday life and try to go on with our lives. Our hearts and our souls will never, ever be the same. They are broken, will never be mended back together. There is not one day that goes by that we don’t think about our love and miss her. We cry every day for her. Someone so special and precious to our hearts. No parent should ever have to experience this pain.
You and the other murderers should not be able to see the light of day or breathe the same air that we do. You all are in prison for serious crimes. What gives you and others any rights?
Your Honor, the one question we continue to ask is why Trevor should have any rights after he serves his term after the torture he caused our daughter. Less than 20 years will never be acceptable. Trevor is 20 now and will be 40 when released. He will still have so much of his life to enjoy, a life Alicia does not because of his choices. He blew Alicia to bits and pieces all over the ground. The coroner testified it was the worst case of violence he had ever seen.
My beautiful daughter, I can only imagine when that day comes and I find myself standing in the sun. I can only imagine you and my Lord Jesus Christ meeting me at the pearly gates welcoming me home, and I will forever live with my Lord, my daughter, my family and my friends. I will never have pain or suffering again. I will be able to love and be happy.
Until then, my Angel, you will forever be my love, my heart, my soul, my everything!
This article originally appeared on The Pickaway News Journal