DOYLESTOWN, Pa. (AP) — Family members of a slain 14-year-old girl are testifying how her death has impacted them as jurors consider a sentence for her killer.
Forty-six-year-old Jacob Sullivan pleaded guilty in the 2016 rape, murder and dismemberment of his girlfriend’s daughter, Grace Packer. A jury outside Philadelphia must decide on a sentence of death or life without parole.
Grace’s cousin, Karie Heisserer, told jurors Wednesday that it sickened her “to know that Grace was abused, tortured and literally thrown away like she was a piece of trash.”
Grace’s adoptive mother, Sara Packer, has agreed to plead guilty in her murder in exchange for a life sentence. Prosecutors say Sara Packer hated Grace and shared a rape-murder fantasy with Sullivan. She is expected to testify for the defense in the penalty phase of Sullivan’s trial.