Independence man sentenced to life for murder of girlfriend after buying life insurance policy
INDEPENDENCE, Ky. (WXIX) - A Northern Kentucky man was sentenced to life in prison on Monday for murdering his girlfriend shortly after he purchased a $20,000 life insurance policy on her.
Tommy Powell was convicted of murdering Amberly Harris in August. He confessed to the killing on video when law enforcement arrived at the scene.
He later pleaded guilty to murder in Kenton County court.
Harris’s sister, Jessica Mann, attended Powell’s sentencing. She says Powell’s actions have left her with an immeasurable loss.
“Losing my sister was like losing a piece of my heart,” Mann says. “It’s never going to grow back.”
Powell’s attorney asked the judge to consider his service in the Navy and his history of mental health issues and addiction. Powell also wrote an apology for killing her.
The judge followed the prosecution’s recommendation of life, citing crime scene photos and Powell buying the life insurance policy.
Kenton County Commonwealth Attorney Rob Sanders says Powell had a history of violence against Harris - he was accused of strangling her during another incident.
He says the case inspired change in the Kenton County department. Officers will make an effort to see victims in person instead of calling them.
“I’m not sure those changes in policies would’ve saved Ms. Harris’s life, but I know I’m not going to take a chance on anything like this happening again.”
Powell will have to serve close to 20 years before he’s eligible for parole.
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