NEW HAVEN, Conn. – A former animal research technician was sentenced Friday to 44 years in prison for killing a Yale graduate student days before what was to be her wedding day in 2009. The judge’s decision came after anguished relatives described how their anticipation of a celebration turned to grief as they returned home with her in a coffin.
Raymond Clark III, 26, apologized in New Haven Superior Court for strangling 24-year-old Annie Le of Placerville, Calif. Her body was found upside down stuffed in a wall of a research lab on Sept. 13, 2009, her wedding day and five days after she was last seen inside the Yale medical building.
“Annie was and will always be a wonderful person, by far a better person that I will ever be in my life,” Clark said. “I’m sorry I lied. I’m sorry I ruined lives and I’m sorry for taking Annie Le’s life.”
Clark pleaded guilty to the killing earlier this year, and prosecutors revealed at the time that he had left behind evidence of a sexual assault and desperately tried to cover his tracks.
Victims identified in shooting spree
YUMA, Ariz. – The 73-year-old man who drove from place to place on a shooting spree in southwestern Arizona gunned down his fifth ex-wife, her attorney and three friends who supported her in their divorce before taking his own life on the side of a road.
Carey Hal Dyess also wounded his ex-wife’s best friend in Thursday’s rampage, which started in the small town of Wellton and extended west to Yuma, a city of about 91,000.
Leon Wilmot, chief deputy for the Yuma County Sheriff’s Office, identified three of the victims Friday as Dyess’ ex-wife Theresa Lorraine Sigurdson, 61; Henry Scott Finney, 76; and James P. Simpson, 75.
The woman who was wounded was Sigurdson’s best friend, Linda Kay Clatone, 52, Wilmot said. She was flown to Phoenix, where she remained hospitalized in critical condition.
Wilmot said the victims were all either acquaintances or friends of Sigurdson who “supported her during the course of the divorce.”
Military academy gets female leader
HARTFORD, Conn. – One of the earliest female graduates of the U.S. Coast Guard Academy returned Friday to take over its top spot, becoming the first woman selected to lead one of the nation’s five military service academies.
Rear Adm. Sandra Stosz was installed as the academy’s 40th superintendent in a change-of-command ceremony Friday on the New London campus. She graduated from the academy in 1982, the third class to include female cadets.
This fall’s incoming class has the most cultural and ethnic diversity in the academy’s history. Coast Guard Commandant Adm. Robert J. Papp, who presided over Friday’s change-of-command ceremony, said maintaining and expanding that diversity is key to the Coast Guard.
Stosz, 51, previously was the Coast Guard’s director of reserve and leadership and also commanded two cutters during her 12 years of experience at sea. They included an assignment as the first female commander of a U.S. icebreaker, the 140-foot Katmai Bay, in northern Michigan.