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Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Teenage mother who shot dead a professional gamer as she tried to steal his PlayStation 4 in Craigslist robbery is jailed for 40 years

Kayla Dixon
A teenage mother who shot dead a semi-professional gamer while trying to steal his PlayStation 4 as her 16-month-old baby lay a few feet away has been jailed for 40 years.

But the family of Daniel Zeitz, 28, say they have forgiven Kayla Dixon, who was only 16 when she pulled the trigger.

Mr Zeitz had advertised the PS4 for sale on Craigslist and agreed to meet Dixon and her boyfriend Nathaniel Vivian, 20, in a parking lot in Sandy Springs, Georgia.

Daniel Zeitz
Shortly before she was sentenced Dixon, who was sobbing, told the court: 'I would trade anything, almost anything, to bring Daniel back. But I know I can't.

'I know he had plans. I wish I could tell him I'm so, so sorry that this happened, but I can't.' 
  
Dixon's attorney, Leah Abbasi, told Judge Wendy Shoob her client had suffered a horrible upbringing, having been sexually abused and exploited by criminals.

But she said: 'Nothing, in any way, excuses what happened, but this is, in some way, an explanation of how things led to being where they were.'


His mother, Patty Zeitz, told WSB-TV her family had forgiven Dixon.

She said: 'At first I didn't want to accept her apology (but) I thought her apology today was very heartfelt and I feel like she is truly sorry for what happened.

'It's just a crime that young people can get caught in these situations because of the examples they'd had in their lives.'


Mr Zeitz, from Roswell, Georgia, was a budding gamer who was known online as Phobos and had fans around the world.

His life and death was the subject of a short documentary, Level Up.

Dixon accepted a plea bargain on the eve of her murder trial.

Her former boyfriend, Nathaniel Vivien, will go on trial later this summer and her attorney told the judge she is willing to testify against him.

Nathaniel Vivien
Police said Vivian, who was in the driver's seat of the car, struggled with Mr Zeitz for the PlayStation while he was standing outside the vehicle.

During the struggle the girl fired a shot from a .25 caliber handgun.

The bullet passed through Vivian's hand and struck Mr Zeitz in the side of his chest, wounding him fatally.

The couple were later arrested when they went to Northside Hospital for treatment of Vivian's gunshot wound to the hand.

Dixon's 16-month-old baby was sitting in the back seat of their car during the robbery.

One of the victim's online gaming teammates set up a Go Fund Me page to raise money for funeral expenses, which ended up raising $24,000.

One person wrote on it: 'I am so sorry for your loss. I can't even begin to imagine what your family and friends are going through. Your sons [sic] life was worth a million times more than a PS4.'






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