Justo Smoker pleads guilty in "horrific" kidnapping, murder of Amish teenager in Lancaster Co.

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LANCASTER, Pennsylvania (WPVI) -- The antheral charged with the kidnapping and sidesplitting of an Amish teen past twelvemonth successful Lancaster County has admitted to the crime.

Thirty-five-year-old Justo Smoker pleaded blameworthy to third-degree murder, kidnapping, maltreatment of a corpse and different offenses connected Friday greeting successful the decease of 18-year-old Linda Stoltzfoos.

Smoker could service up to 88 years successful prison.

He was instantly sentenced to 35 to 71 years down bars for Stoltzfoos' murder, and could beryllium sentenced to much than 17 further years for violating the presumption of his parole.

The Lancaster County District Attorney's bureau said Smoker had been released connected parole 16 months earlier the execution aft pleading blameworthy to aggregate equipped robberies and burglaries, galore against Amish victims.

Prosecutors accidental the condemnation was "specifically structured successful a mode that practically ensures that Smoker would ne'er beryllium released."

"Factually, this lawsuit is horrific and tragic," said District Attorney Heather Adams. "Society volition beryllium protected from Smoker for what volition apt magnitude to the remainder of his earthy life."


Stoltzfoos was past seen walking location from religion successful the Bird-in-Hand country connected June 21, 2020. Her remains were recovered successful a sedate on railroad tracks down a concern wherever Smoker had worked.

Authorities person said they judge Smoker killed Stoltzfoos wrong a fewer hours of kidnapping her, buried her successful 1 determination wherever her stockings and bra had been found, and past moved her respective days aboriginal to the grave.

According to the D.A.'s office, Smoker agreed successful April to disclose the determination of Stoltzfoos' remains and participate a blameworthy plea to third-degree execution and different related charges.

In court, First Assistant Todd Brown said Smoker told investigators that "he approached Linda from down and choked her with his limb nether her cervix and past with shoelaces until she was nary longer breathing. He past stabbed Linda successful the cervix 1 clip to guarantee that she was dead."

Investigators accidental Stoltzfoos' assemblage was recovered with her hands and feet bound; a enactment connecting those bindings was looped astir her neck; her sash and apron were covering her face; and her rima was covered with duct tape.

SEE ALSO: Police ID antheral charged with execution aft shooting astatine Pat's King of Steaks successful Philadelphia

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