John Smith was sentenced today to 26 years in prison for the stabbing death of Elaine Coleman, who was found dead in her apartment on Dec. 4.
According to charging documents, Coleman, 47, was stabbed 41 times and had been nearly decapitated. Some of the wounds could have been inflicted using a pair of scissors, the medical examiner noted.
Charging documents elaborate that Smith, 47, pleaded guilty in Baltimore in 2005 to a count of manslaughter. He had been arrested on suspicion of first-degree murder in a stabbing death in which a pair of scissors was used as the murder weapon.
The maximum charge in the case was 40 years.
A press release from the US Attorney’s Office is below.
Baltimore Man Sentenced to 26-Year Prison Term In December 2011 Slaying in Northeast Washington -Victim Was Stabbed Multiple Times-
WASHINGTON - John Smith, 47, of Baltimore Md., was sentenced today to 26 years in prison in connection with the recent slaying of a woman in Northeast Washington, U.S. Attorney Ronald C. Machen Jr. announced.
Smith pled guilty in January 2012 to a charge of second degree murder while armed. He was sentenced in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia by the Honorable Robert E. Morin.
At the plea hearing, Smith admitted that between December 2, 2011, and December 3, 2011, he was with the victim, Elaine Coleman, 47, inside her home in the 500 block of 23rd Place NE. During this time, he stabbed Ms. Coleman numerous times, and she died as a result of her injuries. Smith was arrested on January 3, 2012.
In announcing the sentence, U.S. Attorney Machen commended those who worked on the case from the Metropolitan Police Department, including Detectives Anthony Patterson, Paul Regan, Douglas Carlson Sean Cain, and Anthony Paci, and Crime Scene Search Officer Curtis Lancaster. He also commended Paralegal Specialist Kelly Blakeney and Victim Witness Advocate Tamara Ince of the U.S. Attorney’s Office. Finally, he praised the work of Assistant U.S. Attorney Charles W. Cobb, who investigated and prosecuted the case.