Focus at Four: Inside the murder trial of Ronald McNeil

BRYAN, Tex. (KBTX) - Ronald NcNeil was sentenced to 99 years in prison for the murder of Blinn College student Lacie LaRose, 19, in May 2015.

Brian Baker, first assistant district attorney for Brazos County and the lead prosecutor in the McNeil trial, says this was an important case for the DA’s office.

“[This happened] in an absolute residential neighborhood,” said Baker. “One of those [bullets] struck the house immediately behind this one. There was a nine-year-old boy one room over. The idea that we can't go to sleep at night in our neighborhoods without fear that somebody else's disagreement…is going to lead to violence and that puts us all in danger is just something we couldn't stand for.”

Robert LaRose, the victim’s father, told KBTX, “I don’t think there can be justice in any kind of punishment unless he gets death like she did.”

Baker says, he understands where this aggrieved father is coming from, but the case didn’t measure up to capital murder charges.

“The problem in this case is the facts and the evidence are not there [for a capital murder case],” Baker said.

For more from Baker on the motive and why it took so long to take the case to trial, see the video player above.