LIMA — A Lima woman who as a teenager stabbed and killed a Toledo man more than a year ago on Monday accepted a deal that will cap her maximum time in prison at 11 years.
Autumn Spears, 20, will be sentenced Dec. 14 following her plea of guilty on Thursday to a charge of voluntary manslaughter in connection with the Sept. 25, 2017, stabbing death of Stephan Kimble-Childress, 27.
Judge David Cheney said Spears faces up to 11 years in prison and a $20,000 fine but also noted that while prison time is likely it is not mandatory. The woman will be eligible to apply for judicial release after serving a portion of her sentence and will be required to spend five years on post-release control.
An Allen County grand jury had returned an indictment charging Spears with two counts of murder, both unspecified felonies, and two counts of felonious assault. Those charges were dismissed in exchange for Spears’ plea to the amended charge.
Police say Spears stabbed Kimble-Childress at the Lima West Apartments, 1855 N. Cole St., Lima.
Spear’s attorney, Kenneth Rexford, told Cheney during Thursday morning’s hearing that his client “has been through hell” and was “victimized physically, sexually, emotionally and financially more than anyone I have ever seen in my life. A shocking amount of violence was placed upon her” that contributed to the events of Sept. 25, 2017, said Rexford.
The attorney at one point during the case said his client had a “history as a victim of sex trafficking.”
Rexford had previously requested his client undergo a series of psychological tests to determine her competency to stand trial. During a hearing in March, Rexford and prosecutors accepted the results of what was described as an “extensive evaluation” by mental health professionals of Spears that found her to be competent.
The attorney had also filed numerous motions with the court in an attempt to suppress statements made by Spears to police following her arrest. Those motions were dismissed upon Spears’ plea on Thursday.