Saturday, 21 January 2023 13:26

Jamaican pleads guilty to killing girlfriend in US

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BURLINGTON, Vermont (AP) — A Jamaican-born man charged with killing his live-in girlfriend in 2018 then fleeing to the island where he evaded authorities for nearly two years pleaded guilty Friday to second-degree murder and was sentenced to 20 years to life in prison.

Leroy Headley, 41, had originally pleaded not guilty in connection with the shooting death of Anako “Annette” Lumumba in the South Burlington home they shared with their two children.

READ: Jamaican wanted for murder in US held in Negril; to be extradited

Headley apologised in court, saying he was “deeply and truly sorry” for killing Lumumba and described her as his “best friend and soulmate.”

Many members of Lumumba's family as well as her friends were in court.

“For us, we just have to, I guess carry on her legacy and be a family,” Adolphe Lumumba, the victim’s brother, told WCAX-TV.

On May 3, 2018, authorities received a 911 call came in from a man who stated, “I shot her, I shot her,” and gave the address of the South Burlington home, according to a police affidavit. The phone was registered to Headley, police said.

Headley’s car was found May 18, 2018, in Albany, New York. The US Marshals Service said he had ties to Jamaica, where he was originally from, and across the US and Canada.

He was arrested by Jamaican authorities February 5, 2020, in Negril, officials said. He was brought back to Vermont where he entered a plea of not guilty and was ordered held without bail.