Man convicted in Shalonda Poole death will serve 2 life terms


Donald Preston Ferguson will serve 2 consecutive life terms in the death of Shalonda Poole.

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GREENSBORO N.C. — Twenty-fours years later, Marilyn Poole is finally getting justice for her baby girl, Shalonda.

“I wanted him to go to prison for life and God answered my prayer,” Poole said.

On Monday, 53- year-old Donald Ferguson was given two life sentences after pleading guilty to first-degree murder and first degree sex offense in the rape and murder of seven-year-old Shalonda Poole in 1990.
Ferguson was arrested in January in South Carolina.
A man Poole says had been to her house.

“He helped us to look for her,” Poole said.

Shanda Poole, Shalonda’s twin sister, sat with her mom and other family members in the courtroom as Ferguson was sentenced, hoping to hear him apologize.

“Explain yourself,” Shanda said. “Just basically say, ‘I’m sorry.”

Even with Shalonda’s killer brought to justice, Marilyn says her family’s healing has just begun.
“I’m glad it’s over,” she said. “But it won’t bring Shalonda back.”

Through faith, she’s found room for forgiveness.

“I don’t hate him,” Poole said. “I love him because I can’t go to Heaven and see Shalonda and mother with hate in my heart.”

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