Daniel St. Hubert was sentenced to 50 years to life in prison for the stabbing

By Steve Helling
May 23, 2018 01:07 PM
Mikayla Capers
Paul Martinka/Splash News

A Brooklyn man who killed a boy and seriously injured a girl by stabbing them in an elevator in 2014 has been sentenced to 50 years to life in prison, PEOPLE confirms.

Daniel St. Hubert was convicted of murder and attempted murder in April. In court on Tuesday, a judge handed down a sentence that would ensure that the 31-year-old man would spend at least five decades in prison.

The case began in 2014 when St. Hubert killed 6-year-old PJ Avitto and seriously injured then 7-year-old Mikayla Capers inside an elevator in their public housing apartment building.

PJ and Mikayla were playing outside under the watchful eye of PJ’s godmother, according to court testimony. When the godmother allowed them to go inside by themselves to get an ice pop, they were attacked by St. Hubert in the elevator.

Neither child knew the attacker.

Capers, now 11, was stabbed 16 times. She spent several weeks in the hospital before recovering. While she was not expected to attend the sentencing hearing, she decided the night before that she wanted to address the court.

In court, Mikayla read from her prepared statement.”Dear Judge,” she said. “I’m Mikayla Capers and thankful the trial is over and the bad man Daniel St. Hubert was found guilty for what he did to me — stabbing me 16 times and stabbing my best friend PJ who died from his stab wounds.”

“I was only 7 years old, and my best friend PJ was only 6,” she continued. “We were just going to get some icie sundae. Sometimes I try not to remember this bad man Daniel St. Hubert and what he did to me and PJ, but every day i must look at my body and see those 16 stab wounds that are there for the rest of my life.”

“My best friend PJ who I think about a lot and wonder what he would be like now, but that will never happen because he died that day from being stabbed,” she said. “I will always remember his smiling face and the fun we had together. I will never forget him.”

Mikayla concluded her statement with a plea for a harsh sentence.

“I ask the bad man be sent to jail for the rest of his life because my friend PJs life has ended at the age of 6 years old,” she said. “He never had the chance to grow up and live his life. I, Mikayla Capers, also was scarred for the rest of my life — I would like to know the bad man would never hurt anyone else. I can breathe again.”

Daniel St. Hubert
Brooklyn District Attorney's office

St. Hubert then got a chance to speak. “I’m a good guy,” he said. “I’ve been a good guy my whole life. I was actually trying to chase a career for being a Hollywood actor. I told them since the beginning that I’m innocent. I’d never done this, and I would never kill two kids.”

In the end, the judge listened to Mikayla and handed down a sentence of 50 years to life. “This case is a tragedy,” Judge Vincent Del Giudice told St. Hubert. “It’s a case that’s of an unspeakable horror. My earnest hope and desire is you never regain your freedom.”

As the judge handed down the sentence, Mikayla and her family began to applaud.