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Murder Sentence Angers Family

The father of the young woman murdered two years ago said the sentence his daughter’s killer received is wrong. Jim Comack said he is angry Joe Herrera will be eligible for parole after serving 22 years for murdering his daughter. Stefanie Comack was killed by Herrera Christmas Day, 2011 when a gun he pressed against her forehead discharged. He was convicted of second-degree murder following a four-day trial in June. The sentence for second-degree murder in Idaho ranges from 10 years to life imprisonment. Judge Fred Gibler sentenced Herrera to life in prison with a mandatory minimum sentence of 22 years/Dan Hammes, St. Maries Gazette Record. More here.

Question: Would a minimum 22-year sentence be enough prison time for someone who murdered a loved one of yours?

Friends Remember Murder Victim

“The Three Stephanies” are down to two after one was shot Christmas Day. Stefanie Comack was one of three St. Maries girls in the class of 2011 named Stephanie. Stephanie Mills, Stephani Brede and Ms. Comack adopted the moniker when they became friends in middle school. Ms. Comack was shot Dec. 25. She was airlifted to Kootenai Medical Center where she later died. Her boyfriend, Joe Herrera, was arrested and charged with second-degree murder. … Her friends described her as the “life of the party” and a “tomboy.” … One of the Stephanie Trio, Ms. Mills, met Ms. Comack in the sixth grade. “We called her "Bugs" because she used to put bugs in her pockets and bring them inside when she was little,” Ms. Mills said. “She was upbeat, all smiles and when she did get mad, she was over it in a second”/Mary Orr, St. Maries Gazette Record. (Gazette Record photo)


Man says fatal shooting was accidental

A St. Maries, Idaho, man accused of murdering an 18-year-old woman told police he accidentally shot her in the face while checking to see if his gun was unloaded, officials say.

 Joseph Duane Herrera, 28, is in jail on $200,000 bond after pleading not guilty to second-degree murder in Benewah County District Court.

He was arrested Sunday for the shooting death of Stefanie Comack.

Read the rest of my story here.

Christmas Killing Brings Murder Count

Joseph Herrera was charged with 2nd Degree Murder Tuesday for the Christmas Day killing of Stefanie Comack of St. Maries. Herrera made his first appearance in court Tuesday where his bond was set at $200,000. Herrera claims that he was unloading his gun when it accidentally discharged. Benewah County Prosecutor Doug Payne says, however, that the evidence shows that when the gun discharged it was very close to Comack's head. Friends and family members close to Stefanie claimed Monday that Herrera had a history of abusive behavior and threatened to shoot her a week before she was killed/KXLY. More here.