Braddock man gets life sentence for killing daughter
A Braddock man on Tuesday called a judge an "idiot" and mocked the system for failing to give him the death penalty for the sexual assault and murder of his toddler daughter.
William Page, 26, erupted after Common Pleas Judge David Cashman told him he deserved to die for assaulting 23-month-old Nyia Page and leaving her to freeze to death Feb. 3, 2007, in an abandoned Rankin playground.
"You should have gotten the death penalty. You not only killed your own daughter ... ," Cashman was saying.
"Listen, idiot, I didn't kill anyone," Page interrupted.
Cashman told Page that he was a "despicable human being" and deserved every day in prison he gets. He sentenced Page to the mandatory life term in prison with no chance of parole plus 21 to 42 years.
Page's courtroom rant sent Nyia's mother, Darlene Scott, into tears. She left without speaking to reporters. Scott was pregnant with Page's child at the time of Nyia's killing, and the couple was raising another of Scott's children.
"You thought I was supposed to die. You and T-Rex and your 900-pound gorilla couldn't kill me. That's what makes me go every day," Page told Cashman and Deputy District Attorney Mark V. Tranquilli, who prosecuted the case. "It took you and this man and 12 jurors, and you still didn't kill me. I'm going strong every day. Every day I'm going strong until I'm free."
An Allegheny County jury convicted Page of first-degree murder in March, but deadlocked 9-3 on whether Page should be executed. Page also was convicted of kidnapping, making false reports to police and aggravated indecent assault.
Page confessed he left the child outside and went back to bed. At trial, he testified that he fabricated the confession to tell police what they wanted to hear and to protect others in his family from being investigated.
Yesterday, Page referenced that he "said some very stupid things and got myself in trouble."
Tranquilli said he wasn't surprised at the outburst.
"I think it was calculated to upset Nyia's mother," Tranquilli said. "Prison is not a good place for people who sexually assault and kill their own children. He will fight every day, but not for his innocence."
Page's attorney, Chris Patarini, said he expected an outburst.
"The things he said are consistent with him maintaining his innocence," Patarini said.