A man who choked and beat a young Fort Worth girl while she walked to her school bus stop was sentenced to life in prison.

The Tarrant County jury on Wednesday, Sept.11, sentenced Terry Wayne King II, a 36-year-old truck driver, for brutally attacking and hospitalizing then 12-year-old Dorika Uwimana. King beat Dorika so badly that she eventually required a heart transplant to save her life.

Dorika, now 14 years old, whose family came to North Texas as refugees from the Democratic Republic of Congo, took the stand during the trial and told jurors about how the man attacked her on that morning in April 2018.

The little girl spoke in Swahili with the help of a translator. She said at first he asked for help, hit her in the face and grabbed her by the neck. He choked her with such force that she nearly died. She was said to have escaped and made it onto her bus, where she became unresponsive.

Dorika called King a “bad man” during her testimony on Monday, Sept. 9.

As the first witness, Dorika’s father told the jury his daughter underwent a lifesaving heart transplant following the attack and recently doctors feared her body was rejecting the new organ. The 14-year-old will have to take a regimen of medications for the rest of her life.

The jury saw pictures of King’s wife during sentencing, beaten and bloodied after a reported assault.

A man also testified he was the victim of a road rage attack in Fort Worth, where he was forced off the road, punched and kicked after honking at a driver. Police identified King as the suspect in that case, just weeks before the attack at the bus stop.

King’s 88-year-old grandmother told the jury she raised him after both his parents abandoned him. She said a mental illness resulted in him having a learning disability.

Despite that, the jury took only 40 minutes to sentence King to life in prison.

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