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Ex-disc jockey gets life in prison for Tampa murder

The Tampa Tribune
Published:   |   Updated: March 20, 2013 at 01:08 PM
TAMPA -

It took more than 12 hours for a jury to convict a former club disc jockey of murdering the mother of his twin toddlers.

It took a judge less than eight minutes today to sentence Cedrick Bontray Salter, known as "Woogie" and "Woogieman," to life in prison for killing SaQuanda Simon in September 2009.

Hillsborough Circuit Judge Emmett Lamar Battles had no choice; a life sentence was mandatory under state law.

Simon's family sat in the courtroom but declined to say anything before Battles meted out punishment. They hugged prosecutors afterward.

Salter's mother, Denise, apologized to Simon's family before the hearing.

She told Battles of the apology and that she still loved her son. She asked the judge to recommend her son serve his sentence near Tampa to make it easier for her to visit.

Battles said he would do so, although the Florida Department of Corrections chooses the prison.

Cedrick Salter remained silent throughout the hearing.

Defense attorney Greg Hill said his client asked him to extend his "apologies and condolences" to Simon's family.

"He is saddened by the events that led to Ms. Simon's death," Hill said.

Jurors last week convicted Salter, 30, of first-degree murder.

Witnesses said Salter pulled a pistol from under his shirt and shot Simon, 29, twice at point-blank range while she held their daughter on her hip. The toddler wasn't injured.

Simon's family testified Salter sent Simon a series of threatening texts that fatal night. They said a furious Salter burst into their Grant Park home when Simon wouldn't return his calls or texts.

Salter maintained it was an accident.

Though he didn't testify, jurors heard his version of events in a taped interview he gave investigators.

In it, Salter disputed that Simon was holding their daughter. He said he was taking out his gun to show that he meant no harm when two of Simon's relatives grabbed him from behind and the gun fired.

Prosecutors said Salter's version didn't mesh with forensic evidence that showed Simon was shot above the right eye from no more than 18 inches away. They also argued Salter showed his guilt when he ran from the house.

Salter later turned himself in to police.

tbrennan@tampatrib.com

(813) 259-7698

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