Grandma, Martha White, Gets Life in Prison for Stabbing Grandson to Death

martha white court
Posted at 10:25 AM, Apr 01, 2016
and last updated 2016-04-01 15:59:12-04

TALLAHASSEE, FL (WTXL) -- A plea deal was reached Friday for a grandmother who stabbed her young grandson to death.

Martha White will spend the rest of her life in prison for killing 6-year-old Mason Rhinehart in August 2014.

"It's a relief to be able to get off what I wanted to get off my chest," said Zack White, Mason's father -- and White's son.

"You just have to stay strong and move forward," said Spring Rhinehart, Mason's mother, "and you can't let something that's meant to tear you down ruin the rest of your life."

White was babysitting Mason and his older brother Aidan when she took Mason into the bathroom, claiming she had a "surprise" for him.

That's when she locked the door and stabbed the six-year-old multiple times.

"It took me a good month of not sleeping, of just feeling...crazy," Zack White said.

Martha White agreed to life in prison with no parole. She could've gotten the death penalty, but the family asked for life instead.

"Death is the easy way out," Rhinehart said. "She would be all alone in a cell, and now she has to face other grandmothers who still love their grandchildren."

In the courtroom, the family looked right at her -- a woman they say Mason loved.

"You know, I forgive you," Zack said to Martha. "I'm not going to live my whole life not forgiving."

"If someone did him wrong, he forgave them," Rhinehart said. "We're just going to keep living how Mason would."

As part of the plea deal, Martha White cannot contact Mason's parents or brother.

She must release her psychiatric records to the family and give half of her state pension to them as well.