Father is sentenced in death of 7-month-old

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Date: 2005-01-08

Byline: Paul Gustafson; Staff Writer

Steven Showcatally was sentenced Friday for the murder of his adoptive infant son before a St. Paul courtroom full of supportive friends and family, led by Gail Hunt, his wife and the child's adoptive mother.

Despite her husband's crime, Hunt said in court that ``Steve was really a good father. ... Steve was very attentive. He was loving. He was so happy to have [Gustavo] in his life.''

``A lot of people ask me if I have forgiven Steve for what he's done. And I say yes. And people ask me why. And the simple, easy answer is that's what God wants me to do,'' she said.

``Steve is a good person. He doesn't have a criminal heart. He doesn't have a criminal mind,'' Hunt told Ramsey County District Judge Salvador Rosas.

Before sentencing the 35-year-old Showcatally to 12 1/2 years in prison Rosas told him ``There is no justification for your conduct. You took everything [your son] had.''

Showcatally must serve at least 8 years and 4 months in prison before he is eligible for release.

Rosas and Assistant Ramsey County Attorney Rosita Severin said they wondered how Gustavo Hunt's birth mother in Guatemala felt, having given up her 7-month-old son for adoption to a U.S. couple in the hope that he would have a better life.

Before being sentenced Friday, Showcatally told his wife and family, ``I brought this upon myself, even though all my intentions were good,'' adding, ``I wish I would have taken my own life instead.''

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