Sentencing Hearing for MO Teen ‘Thrill’ Killer Gets Emotional


Sentencing is expected Wednesday for a Missouri teenager who confessed to murdering a young neighbor girl in 2009 in what was described as a thrill killing by prosecutors, reports the Associated Press. Alyssa Bustamante, 15 at the time of the murder, pleaded guilty to killing 9-year-old Elizabeth Olten. On the night she strangled, slit the throat and repeatedly stabbed Elizabeth, Bustamante wrote that it was an “ahmazing” and “pretty enjoyable” experience, ending the entry by saying: “I gotta go to church now…lol.”

Defense attorneys portrayed Bustamante as a mentally disturbed child during a two-day sentencing hearing in Jefferson City, Mo. The descended into chaos as prosecutor Mark Richardson was making an impassioned final plea for a lifelong sentence for Bustamante. Bustamante’s grandmother stormed out of the courtroom, followed by her grandfather. That prompted Bustamante — who had been staring blankly downward as Richardson recounted her crime — to begin silently crying for the first time in her court proceedings that have spanned more than two years. As Judge Pat Joyce announced that she would reveal her sentence on Wednesday, Elizabeth’s grandmother interrupted and cried out from her wheelchair, “I think Alyssa should get out of jail the same day Elizabeth gets out of the grave!”

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