Thomasine Bennett cries while apologizing to Walter Clark’s family at sentencing

Thomasine Bennett was sentenced to 10 years for beating Walter Clark to death with a bat earlier this year.

During her sentencing on Friday, Bennett turned to Clark’s family and close friends in tears and said, “I’m very sorry that this happened, Walter meant a lot to me”.

Three days after Valentine’s day, 63-year-old Clark was found by police in a closet. According to police, Clark was found alive and unconscious when he was taken to the nearest hospital where he died an hour later.

Bennett was originally charged with first-degree-murder, but she accepted a plea deal earlier this year for voluntary manslaughter. According to the deal, Bennett would be sentenced between 10-14 years. Both her defense and the prosecution argued that she be given 10 years because of her age and her acceptance of responsibility early on in the case. Though prosecution argued that she be given the minimum sentence in the deal, the two prosecutors emphasized the harsh nature of her crime.

After taking a brief recess, Judge Jose Lopez returned to the courtroom and mentioned the “brutality” of her crime. However, he said that “Ms. Bennett has taken responsibility with convincing remorse.”

Judge Lopez sentenced Bennett to 10 years with 5 years of supervised release.

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