Man sentenced to life in prison without parole in 2014 Lookout Valley triple homicides

Defendant Derek Morse looks back as Judge Steelman introduces his bailiff to prospective jurors for the 2014 Lookout Valley triple homicide trial Tuesday, Sept. 19, 2017.

A Chattanooga man's sentence of life without parole Wednesday gave prosecutors their first conviction in the 2014 Lookout Valley triple homicide.

Derek Morse will have to spend the rest of his life in prison because jurors said his crimes on April 9, 2014, constituted mass murder and especially heinous behavior.

Prosecutors said Morse went to a trailer home on Kellys Ferry Road with his friends Skyler Allen and Jacob Allison, and shot and killed Caleb Boozer, John Lang and Jon Morris as they tried to flee into the woods. Morse was angry that Morris and two other men tried to ambush him a few nights earlier over money.

"I did a couple of tours in 'Nam, and I've never seen anything like this," said Thomas Lang, John Lang's older brother, who watched Morse's seven-day trial.