Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Suburban Chicago woman gets 50 years for death of "partner"

A Villa Park, IL woman who killed her "partner" of 7 years to pursue a younger woman has been sentenced to 50 years in prison for suffocating her victim. 32 year old Rebecca Klein was killed by then 26 year old Nicole Abusharif in their shared house March 15, 2007. Two days later, Klein's body was found in Abusharif's 1966 Mustang, still in their garage. The victim's mouth was duct taped, her head was covered with a plastic bag, and hand and feet were bound.

While defense attorneys sought the minimum 20 year sentence for 1st degree murder in Illinois, Assistant DuPage County State's Atty. Joe Ruggiero sought the 60 year maximum sentence. The motive for the murder was Klein's $250,000 life insurance policy and Rose Sodaro, a woman Abusharif had become sexually involved with and whoo was brought to the house the night of Klein's murder.

Klein, a caregiver for disabled people, was "a flower in God's garden on Earth," Ruggiero said. Abusharif was "the bottom of the barrel," he said.

[Judge John] Kinsella said he had no doubt that Abusharif killed Klein, noting that her fingerprints were found on the plastic bag and the tape binding the victim.

The judge said of the defendant, "It was her hand that was on Becky's head when Becky breathed her last."

Klein's sister, Melanie Baldridge, said her family has spent two years trying to figure out how they could have been taken in by Abusharif."Nicole was someone we trusted," Baldridge said.

"She duped and misled all of us."At family dinners, Baldridge said, she and her parents sometimes just stare at the seat Klein used to occupy.

People convicted of 1st degree murder in Illinois must serve all of their sentence without any provision for early release.

While Judge Kinsella stated that how someone can kill another they used to love was "beyond the ken of the court's understanding," when you are dealing with people who see others as objects to be used, then thrown away, the "love" turns out to be really lust, abuse, or obsession.

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