When Arkel Garcia stood before a judge for sentencing in February, he cursed at a sheriff and provoked an altercation that required at least six deputies and police officers to quell.

Witnesses later said Garcia had his hand on the sheriff's gun - the 21-year-old's final act of defiance before a life spent in prison for the murder of a special-needs man over his Beats by Dre headphones.

In a high-security courtroom Thursday, Garcia did not fight his punishment for the Nov. 30, 2013, shooting death of Christian Massey, a 6-foot-2 "gentle giant," in Overbrook.

"That's what we wanted," said Assistant District Attorney Brendan O'Malley. "We did this with a multitude of sheriffs. There was no emotional testimony. We just wanted to get the sentence, to get justice for Chris Massey, and that's what happened here."

A Common Pleas Court jury last month found Garcia guilty of second-degree murder. Garcia's chair tipped over behind him in February when he stood. Deputy Sheriff Sgt. Robert Castelli pushed it close behind Garcia, who swore at Castelli and spun around. The struggle continued in an adjacent holding area, where Garcia attempted to lift Castelli's weapon, O'Malley said.

That led to new charges of aggravated assault, disarming a law enforcement officer, and related offenses.

Sentencing for the murder was moved Thursday to a more secure courtroom at the Criminal Justice Center, where Garcia quietly answered basic questions from his attorney, Joshua E. Scarpello.

Garcia's family attended Thursday's sentencing. Glass separated them. They were the last to depart Courtroom 306.

He confessed to committing the robbery with two friends but insisted he was not the gunman. Surveillance video from the 5900 block of Lebanon Avenue showed one man following Massey, who was 21.

The $300 headphones were left on the street, near Massey's body, after the shooting. He had owned them for less than a day.

mgelb@philly.com

215-854-2928 @MattGelb