Valentine's Day

Woman, 76, Who Beat Boyfriend to Death With Bat Pleads Guilty

Suspect said victim made her smoke street drug 'love boat'

A 76-year-old woman who police say repeatedly beat her 63-year-old boyfriend with a metal baseball bat over the course of a day and a half pleaded guilty to his death Friday.

If the plea agreement is approved by the court, Thomasine Bennett will spend 10 years in prison, prosecutors said in a statement Friday. 

On Feb. 17, 2017, Bennett met officers responding to a report of trouble and told them her boyfriend made her smoke the street drug "love boat" the previous night, according to court documents. She showed them to a hallway closet barricaded with a board and showed them Walter Mack Clark unconscious, unresponsive and naked in the fetal position with his hands bound.

Clark was pronounced dead at Howard University Hospital about an hour later.

Clark's family believes Bennett lured him to her home.

Bennett told investigators Clark asked her to marry him on Valentine's Day while they were at a club, but she said she was tired of loving him and tired of him being with other women, according to court documents. Also on Valentine's Day, she almost got into a fight with someone else over Clark, she told investigators.

Bennett told police she beat him with a bat various times Thursday and Friday, according to court documents. A witness claims to have observed beatings both days and hearing Bennett call Clark a demon, police said.

The witness also claimed to have been held at gunpoint by Bennett at one point and struck on the head when escaping the home, but the witness didn't call police, according to court documents. The witness has a history of drug abuse and claimed to have bipolar disorder and schizophrenia, but the witness claimed to not be using drugs Thursday or Friday, though did admit drinking vodka with Bennett Thursday.

Police did see the witness had a head injury, according to court documents.

Police arrested Bennett and charged her with assault with intent to kill. After an autopsy revealed Clark died of blunt force trauma, the charge was upgraded to first-degree murder, police said. That charge was later changed to voluntary manslaughter.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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