The central Missouri teen who pleaded guilty last month to the brutal murder of her 9-year-old neighbor was sentenced to life in prison Wednesday. Before her sentencing, 18-year-old Alyssa Bustamante apologized to the family of her victim Elizabeth Olten.
"I know words can never be enough and they can never adequately describe how horribly I feel for all of this,” she said. “If I could give my life to get her back I would. I'm sorry.”
Bustamante’s defense team argued against a life sentence, pointing out the teen’s struggle with depression and past suicide attempts. Prosecutors pushed for life because of the brutal nature of the crime. Bustamante was 15-years-old when she lured Olten into the woods behind their neighborhood in St. Martins. She repeatedly stabbed Olten in the chest, strangled her and slit her throat before dumping her body in a shallow grave. Bustamante described the killing as “amazing” and “pretty enjoyable” in a diary entry.
"I strangled them and slit their throat and stabbed them now they're dead. I don't know how to feel atm. It was ahmazing. As soon as you get over the 'ohmygawd I can't do this' feeling, it's pretty enjoyable. I'm kinda nervous and shaky though right now. Kay, I gotta go to church now...lol,” she wrote.
In addition to life with the possibility of parole for second-degree murder, Cole County Circuit Judge Pat Joyce sentenced Bustamante to 30 years for armed criminal action. The 30 year sentence will run consecutively.
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