Westchester County District Attorney Anthony A. Scarpino, Jr. announced that Neil White of New Rochelle was sentenced to 25 years to life for the murder of his 7-year-old daughter, Gabrielle White, in their New Rochelle home in 2017. Westchester County Court Judge George Fufidio presided.
In July, White was found guilty of Murder in the Second Degree, a class “A” Felony, following a jury trial. The jury returned its verdict in five hours July 3, 2019, and found White responsible for smothering the child.
In court, Michelle Hord, Gabrielle’s mother, delivered a powerful impact statement. Holding her daughter’s precious rag doll, she described the two years since her child’s murder as “a razor-blade cut of trauma, memory, pain, confusion, betrayal and disbelief.” She told the court she, her daughter and White were all asthmatics and added that “Asthmatics know the terror of not being able to easily inhale and exhale…and yet… Gabrielle’s daddy willfully and evilly chose to take that away from a baby who he once seemed to love and a daughter who he ultimately used as a pawn….My heart and soul have literally been ripped from the body by this man.”
Deputy District Attorney Timothy Ward asked the court for the maximum sentence, which the judge granted.
Background: On June 6, 2017, around 3 p.m., the family’s nanny arrived at the Arbor Glen home in New Rochelle where both the child victim, Gabrielle, and her father, Neil White, resided. The nanny went to the third floor of the townhome and called out to both of them.
At the time, White, who was bleeding from both his wrists from self-inflicted knife cuts, came out of the master bedroom. The nanny became frightened and fled the home. Once outside, she immediately contacted the victim’s mother and the police. New Rochelle Police Officers entered the home and found the defendant in the master bedroom. Other officers found the child in her bedroom, under her blanket, cold and lifeless. White was taken to the hospital for treatment and was subsequently charged in the death of his daughter.
The Medical Examiner’s Office determined that the cause of the victim’s death was asphyxia from smothering.
This case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Paul Stein, Chief of the Child Abuse/Elder Abuse Bureau of the Special Prosecutions Division, and Timothy Ward, Deputy District Attorney of the Superior Court Trial Division.
Following the guilty verdict, DA Scarpino said, “Once again, our hearts go out to the family of Gabrielle White, who will always mourn the loss of this little girl, especially her mother who spoke today of her profound loss. Domestic violence is insidious. How a parent can take out his anger and disappointment in life by killing his child is incomprehensible. Neil White will have a long time in prison to think about what he has done. Justice was served.”