Bobby Lee Cutts, Jr. was sentenced to 57 years to life in prison yesterday for the killing of his pregnant girlfriend, Jessie Marie Davis, and their unborn daughter, Chloe. Cutts and Davis also have a 3-year-old son, Blake, who is now being raised by Jessie’s mother, Patricia Porter. Through tears of grief Patricia spoke directly to her daughter’s killer in the courtroom, extending the following words of forgiveness before the judge imposed the sentence.
I have had this conversation in my head with you a million times. It is a day I will never in my life forget. When I walked in that room, the presence of evil was so strong in there you could hardly breathe, and I knew my daughter was dead. I never ever thought she walked out of that room. And when you walked up there that morning, Bobby, I never in my heart wanted to believe you could have hurt her, but in my soul I knew you had.
I remember pulling into the driveway the next day and asking God, “Where is my daughter?” and he said, “She’s with me, and she’s fine.” And I made up my mind that day that whoever did that, I would forgive them because I never wanted to allow that kind of hatred into my life. I would have never been able to raise Blake and hate you. And I’ve written a lot of things here, and none of them seem to make any sense. None of this makes sense. There’s mornings I have to cover her picture up or I can’t get out of bed. And I just move on. I pretend that one day she’ll walk through the door again, but you and I know she won’t.
I serve an amazing God, Bobby, a God that forgives and heals and restores people. And I want you to know today that I do forgive you. And I know that it’s only through him that I am able to do that, and I pray that you find him, and you find the forgiveness that nobody else in this room can give you. It doesn’t matter what anybody else in this room feels for you. And that one day you will tell the truth. I think you lied to so many people. I don’t think you know how to tell the truth. I think you’re going to have to learn all over again.
And, your Honor, I may not have a family to go home to after this, but I pray that you make a way for this man to someday be able to get out of there and begin a new life, and to hold his son, maybe as a man. And I hope you pray that I’m able to raise him to forgive you. He knows what you did. You would not believe the stories he’s told us.
In a press conference after the sentencing, Patricia was asked: “Not even just [during] the trial, but beforehand you were very forgiving. How are you able to do that?” Patricia responded:
I know it sounds very cliche, but it’s because of Christ, because I’m forgiven, because I remember when Jesus hung on the cross and he asked his Father to forgive people that killed him. Nobody understands what it’s like to lose a child more than God did. He was able to forgive, and because of that I am able to forgive.
What a tremendous testimony to the power of God’s forgiveness in the believer’s life through Jesus Christ. “Love your enemies, do good to them … Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful … Forgive, and you will be forgiven.” (Luke 6:35-37)