A Kansas man who shot three people in a bar, killing an engineer from India, will likely spend the rest of his life in prison on the state charge of premeditated first-degree murder. He still faces federal hate crime charges in the shooting.
District Court Judge James Charles Droege sentenced Adam Purinton, 52, to 50 years in prison on Friday for the fatal shooting of Srinivas Kuchibhotla in February 2017. Purinton opened fire at Austins Bar and Grill in Olathe, where he wounded Kuchibhotla’s friend, Alok Madasani, who is also from India. Bystander Ian Grillot was shot as he tried to intervene in the shooting.
Police said Purinton shouted racial slurs at the two immigrants, at one point yelling “get out of my country.”
After leaving the bar, Purinton went to an Applebee’s in Missouri where a bartender at the restaurant said the man claimed he had “just killed two Middle Eastern men.”
“Today’s sentencing in the murder of my husband will not bring back my Srinu,” Kuchibhotla’s wife, Sunayana Dumala, said in a Friday statement. “But it sends a strong message that hate is never acceptable.”
Dumala, who had been with her husband for more than a decade, then directed her message to Purinton.
“In the few minutes that you have seen Srinu you built so much hatred for him that you decided he did not deserve to live,” she said. “What harm did he do to you that you grew so much animosity towards him? He was only enjoying a glass of beer with his friend. I wish you had the ability to see beyond my husband’s skin color and the beautiful and kind-hearted person underneath it.”
At the time of the shooting, President Donald Trump faced strong criticism for remaining silent on the perceived hate crime until six full days after the shooting.
Purinton will not be eligible for parole until 50 years into his sentence. If convicted of the hate crime charges, he could face the death penalty.