"She was a beautiful young girl, and this is the way I remember her," Chandler said. "We prayed, we prayed. I tried to put it in God's hands."
She described Starlena as "black as black could be" when she saw her in the hospital. She was unrecognizable, most of her face burned.
"I didn't want to let my daughter go," she said, wiping tears. "He burned her nose, her mouth. She couldn't talk to me.
"We have suffered enough," she told the judge. "Please just give justice on my daughter."
King said the pictures were disturbing, and so was the crime.
"I've been in this courtroom 20 years, and prosecutor for 16. I saw a lot," he said. "But I don't think I've ever seen more cruel, barbaric, malicious conduct ever. It's totally without excuse.
"The agony, the pain, the suffering that this lady felt, I can't imagine," he said. "I've seen people burned up in fires, but someone burned like this ... what would possess a human being to do what you did in this case?
"There is absolutely nothing about you or this case that in any way would permit me to give you mercy," he told Rhodes.
Applause broke out in the courtroom, but King quickly silenced it.
"This is not a place for that," he said, threatening to remove anyone who made any more outbursts. "This is not a pleasant experience for Mr. Rhodes, or for anyone in this courtroom."
Rhodes' family members sat in the courtroom crying long after Pratt's family and friends left.
Outside the courthouse, members of Pratt's family held up posters and photographs prior to the hearing, asking for justice.
Lisa Groves, a Pratt family friend, held a banner imploring passersby to "Pray for Justice for Starlena Pratt." The banner featured an enlarged photo of the young woman.
"What he did to her was awful, just awful," Groves said.
Contact writer Cheryl Caswell at cher...@dailymail.com or 304-348-4832.