Snellville teen sentenced to 140 years in fatal 2021 Valentine’s Day shooting

Damia Mitchell, 18, was sentenced to 140 years in prison for the killing of 20-year-old Faith Burns on Valentine's Day 2021. Mitchell was 17 at the time of the shooting.

Credit: Gwinnett County Police Department

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Damia Mitchell, 18, was sentenced to 140 years in prison for the killing of 20-year-old Faith Burns on Valentine's Day 2021. Mitchell was 17 at the time of the shooting.

Credit: Gwinnett County Police Department

An 18-year-old convicted in a 2021 Valentine’s Day fatal shooting of a woman in a Dacula neighborhood has been sentenced to 140 years in prison.

Damia Mitchell, of Snellville, fired several shots at 20-year-old Faith Burns, of Loganville, in 2021 at the intersection of Uniwattee Trail and Mountain Ash Court, according to prosecutors. Burns died at a hospital shortly after the shooting.

Mitchell was accompanied by four other girls: Kennedy Collins and Jocelyn Spencer, both 17 at the time, and Janae Washington and Diamond Giminez, who were 16 but were charged as adults. All four pleaded guilty Tuesday to aggravated assault for assisting Mitchell in the shooting, and prosecutors agreed to drop charges of murder.

Spencer, Collins and Gimenez were each sentenced to four years in prison, according to Gwinnett Judicial Circuit District Attorney Patsy Austin-Gatson. Washington, who according to Channel 2 Action News was the only co-defendant to testify at Mitchell’s trial, was sentenced to two years.

As for Mitchell, a Gwinnett County jury found her guilty last week of voluntary manslaughter, three counts of aggravated assault and seven counts of violating Georgia’s Street Gang Terrorism and Prevention Act. She was acquitted of two additional gang charges and two firearms charges.

According to the warrant from her initial arrest, Mitchell, a known member of the 9 Trey Bloods, coordinated with the other defendants, including another Bloods gang member, to shoot Burns that Valentine’s Day. After the initial bout of gunfire and while two other people were trying to help Burns, Mitchell drove back and shot at them multiple times.

ExploreGwinnett police charge 4 teen girls in woman’s Valentine’s Day shooting death

Investigators believed Burns and Mitchell were involved in a “domestic altercation” prior to the shooting, police said at the time. According to Channel 2, Burns was visiting the home of Mitchell’s ex-girlfriend when she was killed.

Mitchell’s family was shocked a judge ordered her to serve 140 years, which they feel is unjust. Her aunt, Lena Hall, told Channel 2 the life sentence is “just outrageous” and that Mitchell was not in a gang.

“They had friends, you know, boyfriends ... that were possibly affiliated with gangs, but that did not make them gang members,” Hall said.

But for Burns’ father, life in prison is no comparison to losing his daughter.

“I got sentenced to life without my daughter. Everybody called her my twin. Looked just like me,” Allen Burns told the news station. “She’s never coming back. I lost my daughter ... They might get a chance to see and talk to their children, but we will never get that opportunity.”

Credit: WSBTV Videos

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‘I got sentenced to life without my daughter:” Dad reacts to 140-year sentence for daughter’s killer

Credit: WSBTV Videos