Penn. man sentenced for suffocating girlfriend after failing to kill her in 115 mph car crash
A 21-year-old man was sentenced to 28 to 56 years in prison for suffocating the girlfriend he failed to kill in a deliberate 115 mile per hour automobile accident, Lancaster Online reports.
According to prosecutors, Benjamin Klinger was driving with his on-again, off-again girlfriend Samantha “Sammi” Heller on December 4, 2012. He deliberately crashed his 1986 Toyota Celica into the guardrail in an attempt to kill Heller, police contend, and upon discovering that she was still alive, prosecutors claimed that he sat on her chest and suffocated her.
A passing motorist witnessed him doing so and called 911. On the call, a woman can be heard moaning in pain in the background.
Heller’s family said that they tried “to do everything they could to keep Sammi away from Ben,” but that she continued to date him despite their efforts.
At his sentencing hearing, Lancaster County Judge Margaret Miller told Klinger that there “is no doubt in my mind you lived your life with a callousness, arrogance and a cowardliness, frankly, because being a bully is a coward. You treated [Heller] like an object, and when that object became an inconvenience, the object was removed from your path.”
She sentenced him to 23 to 46 years for third-degree murder and homicide by vehicle, and added three to six years for a pending charge against him for sending a sexually explicit photograph of having sexual intercourse with a minor, as well as another two to four years for dealing drugs to an undercover police officer.
[“Crashed Mustang” via Wikimedia Commons, Creative Commons License]