"I'm sorry for my actions," he said. "And I take responsibility for them. It was me being provoked that caused my actions. It wasn't deliberate or planned."
His attorney, Shawn Bayliss, called Hilliard "bright, engaging and personable" but said he found himself "with the wrong persons doing the wrong things."
He asked that Hilliard, father of a 3-year-old child, be given probation, or be sent to a facility for youthful offenders where he could get his GED and help with drug addiction.
"We don't ask anyone to take that death lightly," Bayliss said of Booker's murder. "But we see an opportunity to redirect his life."
Assistant Prosecutor Fred Giggenbach, however, said Booker's shooting was one in a long string of recent gun crimes and deaths related to drugs and weapons downtown.
"Over 70 shots were fired at Andre Williams in retaliation in this case, and an innocent bystander was shot on the West Side," Giggenbach said. "And Mr. Booker was in a dangerous occupation."
He asked for a 15-year penitentiary sentence for Hilliard, and the judge agreed.
Contact writer Cheryl Caswell at cher...@dailymail.com or 304-348-4832.