- Last Updated: 3:35 PM, June 26, 2012
- Posted: 1:50 PM, June 26, 2012
A monstrous mugger today was carted off to serve at least 17 years in prison for fatally plowing his getaway car into an elderly nun in Harlem.
"Don't worry about it," Dyson Williams, 22, called to his family in the audience of Manhattan Supreme Court as he was led out, shuffling in his leg shackles, to serve his sentence of 17 years to life behind bars.
"She's gone forever," Assistant DA Peter Casolaro said of Sister Mary Celine Graham, 84, of the Franciscan Handmaids of Mary religious order.
Abandoned as a child in her hometown of Detroit, Graham became a nun at a young age, and spent her life caring for children, Casolaro said.
Graham, who suffered from Parkinson's disease and diabetes, had been walking with her health aide to a physical-therapy appointment when Williams -- fresh from his fifth early-morning mugging -- struck her and other pedestrians at the corner of West 122nd Street and Lenox Avenue.
"He seems to be unable to relate to the pain that he has caused other people," the prosecutor said. "He don't seem to express the empathy that other people would after causing so much anguish in other people."
Williams, a Manhattan resident, had pleaded guilty in May to murder, robbery and felony assault -- charges that could have put him behind bars for 25 years to life.
His co-defendant, William Robbins, 20 -- who had exited the car when cops pulled the pair over -- was sentenced to 15 years in prison last week for his role in the fatal crash.
Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Carol Berkman handled the pleas and sentencings.
One of Williams' surviving victims, former nursing aide Patricia Cruz — who attended the sentencing leaning on a cane — is in constant pain, the prosecutor said.
Steven Phan, a former electrician from Brooklyn, will never walk normally and experiences great pain even after standing briefly, the prosecutor said.
"The defendants tore a path of violence through the Harlem community," DA Cyrus Vance, Jr., said of Williams and Robbins, noting the serious lingering injuries of the surviving victims.
He called Graham, "a beloved member of her religious order and her neighborhood."