WAUKEGAN, Ill. (STMW) — The voice of the late Patrick Foster rang out clearly in a north suburban courtroom Tuesday, as prosecutors played the 911 tape in which, after being shot five times, he called police and held his attacker down until they arrived.
“I got shot. I’m bleeding real bad. Please somebody help me, I’m about to die,” the 44-year-old Park City man told a dispatcher at 3:15 a.m. on March 13, 2010, from the driveway of a Zion home. “I don’t want to die here.”
“Is the guy that did it there?” the dispatcher asks after sending police and an ambulance to the scene.
“Yeah, I’m standing on him,” Foster responded. At times during the tape, which lasted about six minutes, Foster tells his attacker, who can be heard struggling and yelling in the background, “you’re not going anywhere.”
His assailant, 42-year-old Darryel Garner of Waukegan, will be going to prison for the next 43 years for the robbery and murder of Foster, who died more than two months after being shot in the jaw, neck and back by Garner.
Judge James Booras sentenced Garner to 47 years, which will be served at 100 percent and includes a 25-year-enhancement for using a firearm, but Garner is being given credit for the four years he’s spent in Lake County Jail.
If he is released, he will be 85, a birthday he is unlikely to see considering lifespans in prison, his defense attorney, Keith Grant, noted.
Prosecutor Jeff Pavletic asked for a 60-year prison term, while Grant asked for a 20-year sentence in addition to the 25-year enhancement.
Just prior to his trial, Garner pleaded guilty to murder without any deal or incentive from prosecutors. He said it was “the right thing to do,” according to Grant and defense attorney Eric Rinehart.
At his sentencing hearing Tuesday, he apologized and expressed his remorse to Foster’s family.
“If I could take it back I would, but I can’t,” Garner said. He also asked Booras for mercy, saying that he has changed his life in jail through faith, classes and programs.
After the sentencing hearing, Foster’s wife, Maria Foster, said she is “not happy, but satisfied” with the sentence.
“He will have time to maybe turn into a good man,” she said of Garner.
Booras said that he had no doubt that Garner’s remorse was genuine, but also said his sentence had to reflect the seriousness of the crime, especially the premeditated use of a gun to shoot someone prior to robbing him.
“He shot first and asked questions later. He shot five times. If that’s not intent, and premeditation, I don’t know what is,” Booras said.
In his confession to police, Garner said he had been depressed and drinking, and admitted that he called a cab and shot Foster, the responding driver, several times intending to rob him. The shooting occurred on the 3100 block of Lebanon Avenue in Zion.
When police arrived, Garner was being held down on a driveway by Foster, and both men were covered in blood.
Garner also managed to call his wife to tell her he was shot after calling 911.
Garner was charged with murder after Foster died at Froedtert Memorial Lutheran Hospital in Milwaukee on May 10, 2010, of complications resulting from the five gunshot wounds.
In a victim impact statement submitted to the court on behalf of the family, Maria Foster said her husband was a “simple, hardworking, humble and noble” man who devoted his life to supporting his family.
Assistant State’s Attorney Eric Kalata said that after Foster was laid off from a long-time truck driving job, he took a job working as a cab driver on the overnight shift in some of the most dangerous areas of the county to continue to provide for his family and ensure a college education for his children.
“All of his spare time was devoted to us,” Maria Foster said. “He was our happiness, our security and we depended on him to live.”
(Source: Sun-Times Media Wire © Chicago Sun-Times 2014. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)