Urbana man sentenced to 45 years in wife’s smothering death

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URBANA, Ill. (AP) – A central Illinois judge has sentenced an Urbana man to 45 years in prison for killing his wife and then hiding her body in a plastic tote.

The Champaign News-Gazette reports that 38-year-old Shaun Michael Thomas told the judge Wednesday during the hearing that he didn’t intend to kill 37-year-old Jessica Thomas. He said “I don’t know why I got so angry.”

Prosecutors say Thomas choked his wife and duct taped her body after the couple argued about car keys in May. They say Thomas then put her body in the tote, wrapped it in bags and sealed it with duct tape.

Sheriff’s investigators said Jessica Thomas died from being smothered by duct tape.

Thomas’ defense attorney asked for a 20-year term, saying Thomas turned himself in and pleaded guilty.
Information from: The News-Gazette, http://www.news-gazette.com