Puyallup

Man gets 5-year sentence for killing son, daughter

Man gets 5-year sentence for killing son, daughter
TACOMA, Wash. -- A 70-year-old Puyallup father says he'll regret what he did the rest of his life. Michael League was given a 5-year sentence for killing his two adult children as they slept. League's family members didn't want him to serve any time.

League came into court teary eyed and not looking at his family who had gathered in his defense for the murder of his 43-year-old daughter Danielle and 46-year-old son Dennis.

League addressed the court, "I loved my children when they were born. I love them now and I will always love them no matter what happened."

What happened was League had shot both of his adult children in the head last March as they slept in his home. He then called 911: "I just committed a father's worst sin. I just shot my daughter in the head and my son in the head."

Family and friends testified this came after years of nonstop verbal abuse and pilfering of League's bank account by the two, fueled by drugs and alcohol. They called it "a living Hell." They say police had responded to that home dozens of times.

Dennis League's daughter Kayla told the court, "One day he'd be my dad and the next day he wouldn't. I didn't understand it was alcohol and it just scared me growing up."  She told the judge she doesn't want her grandfather to serve any prison time even though he killed her father. "I don't think he should be in here or any of this. He couldn't take it and I just want him back home."

Michael League's wife Joann echoed that sentiment. "I would hope you would show leniency," she said. "We have to live with this for the rest of our lives so the sentence is already there permanently."

"I have asked God to forgive me," said a tearful League. "I've asked my son Dennis to forgive me and my daughter Danielle to forgive me."

The prosecutor wanted 15 year sentences for each murder to run one after the other. Judge Garold Johnson said murder is wrong, but the children provoked it.  He handed down a 5 year total sentence.

League has already served nearly a year in jail and with time off for good behavior he could be out in three years. League came into court anguished, but left with hope. As his family yelled, "We love you Michael."