A man convicted of killing two of his stepdaughters during a 2006 birthday celebration has been sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.
The Los Angeles Times reports that Robert Lee Phillips told the courtroom before his Wednesday sentencing that the deaths of 30-year-old Sabrina Taylor and 33-year-old Charlotte Johnson were accidents. He said he'd been trying to disperse "gang bangers" in the yard at the South Los Angeles party.
The 66-year-old Phillips was found guilty of first-degree murder and second-degree murder in July. Prosecutors say the family was celebrating Taylor's birthday when Phillips, who was drinking heavily, grabbed a gun and opened fire. He killed the two sisters and shot at other family members outside the house.
Two previous trials had ended with hung juries.