OLATHE, Kan. — The man who has been accused in a possible hate crime shooting at an Olathe bar and pleaded guilty to three counts of premeditated first-degree murder was sentenced to life in prison Friday.
In March, 52-year-old Adam Purinton admitted to killing an Indian national and wounding two other men in a February 2017 shooting at Austins Bar and Grill in Olathe.
Purinton was sentenced to life in prison for the murder charge in the death of Srinivas Kuchibhotla and 165 months for each of the other two murder charges. Those sentences will run consecutively.
Altogether, that results in life in prison plus 27 years and 6 months.
Witnesses said Purinton, who is white, yelled racial slurs before he fatally shot Kuchibhotla and wounded Alok Madasani. A third man, Ian Grillot, was injured by gunfire when he tried to intervene. Kuchibhotla and Madasani were engineers at GPS-maker Garmin.
"'You’re gonna stick up for them, and not me?'" Grillot recalled Purinton saying. "And that’s when I kind of knew what he was insinuating."
That insinuation Grillot understood was about the color of Srinivas and Alok’s skin.
The state of Kansas does not differentiate for attempted murder in official charges, which is why Purinton faces three counts of premeditated first-degree murder, even though only one victim died.
Purinton also faces federal hate crime charges. He previously pleaded guilty in federal court to these charges, but he is expected to change his plea during a hearing scheduled for May 21 at 10:30 a.m.
Sunayana Dumala, Kuchibhotla's widow, issued the following statement after Purinton's sentencing:
"Today’s sentencing in the murder of my husband will not bring back my Srinu, but it sends a strong message that hate is never acceptable. I want to thank the District Attorney’s office and the Olathe police for their efforts to bring this man to justice.
"We must understand and love one another. I don’t want another Sunayana or a Mindy Corporon to go through what we have in losing our loved ones. Nothing can fill the void left by this murderess act and the emptiness I feel inside since Sriniu’s murder. I have shared Srinu’s story to highlight the goodness in him with the hope that others will emulate his life and not that of the man who took it. As with other immigrants, Srinu came to the United States with dreams for a better future, obtaining his master’s degree and working in the aviation industry. His zeal to achieve was evident in his time with Garmin where he was working on autopilot systems for helicopters-a job he loved. It was his pride.
"Srinu never hurt anyone—that is the way life should be lived.
"I continue to use what has happened as a platform with the hope of saving others from going through this hell. We must be there for each other and be proactive to build a loving and understanding community for current and future generations. As Ian Grillot and others at Austin’s stood up that fateful February night, we must all stand up for each other before more hateful acts occur in our community.
"I want to take a moment and thank those who have supported me during this past trying year and I hope they will continue to do so. I invite others to join us in our continued effort to spread love and peace.
"A good way to start is going to the Forever Welcome page on Facebook—we want to hear those stories of how immigrants have contributed and continue to contribute to our nation writing our diverse narrative.
"There will never be a better time than now to stand up to hate and spread love. Thank You."