Wrightsville man gets life in prison for killing Sami Young
Samantha Young's daughter, Arteya, just turned 3 years old.
"She's her mother to a T," said Melissa Hawkes, Arteya's maternal grandmother and murder victim "Sami" Young's grieving mother. "She looks like her and acts like her."
Neither of Arteya's parents have been able to watch her grow. They won't see her play sports or exhibit artistic talent, as her own mother did. They won't watch her walk down the aisle or perhaps have her own children one day.
Arteya must visit her mother at Susquehanna Memorial Gardens cemetery. To see her father, Marcus Bordelon, she'll have to go to state prison.
On Tuesday, Bordelon, 23, of Wrightsville, was sentenced to life in prison without parole for the first-degree murder of 21-year-old Sami, which happened April 19, 2015, inside Bordelon's home. He also was sentenced, concurrently, to 10 to 20 years for conspiracy to commit obstruction of justice and six to 12 months for abuse of a corpse.
Arteya was 1 year old at the time. She was in Bordelon's home when he fatally stabbed her mother at least 49 times, according to earlier testimony.
Shattered lives: As he imposed sentence, Common Pleas Judge Harry M. Ness told Bordelon he finds it amazing that by age 23, Bordelon had committed a crime so heinous it "managed to define you for the rest of your life."
Ness noted that by taking Sami's life, Bordelon forfeited his own.
But in victim-impact statements to the court, Sami's family members repeatedly noted that Bordelon also irrevocably changed Arteya's life for the worse.
"You killed any chance Arteya had to live a normal life," Angelica Young, Sami's sister, told Bordelon in open court. She said her niece now lives with her grandparents in three different homes.
"You will never be able to show her what a good father is," she said, and talked about all the important moments both Arteya's parents will miss.
"You could've had all those moments," Angelica Young said. "I hope you can find some kind of remorse ... when you have to answer to that little girl. ... All you could think about was solving your own problems."
Picking up the pieces: Angelica Young also read aloud in court several other impact statements, including one submitted by Hawkes.
"Did you not think about Arteya not having a mother or a father?" Hawkes asked Bordelon in her written statement. "Now I ... must pick up the pieces and raise Arteya."
Hawkes noted that Sami was a fighter, even to the end. She was supposed to start taking online classes April 20, 2015 — the day after police found her body hidden in Bordelon's shed.
Sami was intent on becoming a phlebotomist so she could better support her daughter, family members have said.
After Angelica Young finished reading the impact statements, Judge Ness stepped down from the bench and asked her to tell him about some of the dozens of photographs of Sami that her family used to make three large collages that were placed at the front of the courtroom. He asked her questions about the photos, and the two of them shared sad smiles as they talked.
'She'll be loved': Sami's uncle, Leonard Young, said he can't find the words to express his anger.
"It takes every emotion out of me and our family," he told the judge, but said his family has rallied around Arteya.
"She'll be loved," he vowed.
April Ginter also spoke in court, telling the judge that her niece's death has been "the hardest time of my life" and that she loved Sami "with all my heart."
"You should get help for yourself," she told Bordelon.
No known reason: The murderer also spoke in court, saying he hopes his guilty plea and sentence will help bring closure to Sami's family.
"I have searched the depths of myself," he said. "I can't say how or why I let myself commit this unbearable act."
Bordelon said his insecurities — anger, jealousy and paranoia — played a part.
"I refused to seek professional help ... out of shame of what other people would think of me," he told the judge. "I'm truly sorry for my selfish ... choices."
Also Tuesday, chief deputy prosecutor Tim Barker told Ness that Bordelon's co-defendant, Natasha Stover, will be pleading guilty to some of the charges against her — specifically, conspiracy to commit first-degree murder, obstruction of justice and conspiracy to commit obstruction.
It will be an open plea, according to Barker, meaning it will be up to Ness to determine Stover's punishment. Ness scheduled Stover's guilty-plea hearing for 1 p.m. Feb. 28.
The background: Bordelon lured Sami to his Chestnut Street home by telling her something was wrong with Arteya, who was visiting her father that night, according to Young's family. Bordelon and Young were no longer involved, her family said.
Young suffered stab wounds and cuts all over her body, including clusters of stab wounds to her back and wounds to her neck, head, chest, arms and legs.
Stab wounds penetrated her heart, both lungs, liver and diaphragm, according to Dr. Michael Johnson, a forensic pathologist who testified at Bordelon's preliminary hearing.
Johnson said Young suffered at least 49 stab wounds, probably more. He explained that "clusters" of wounds with "co-mingled" pathways made it difficult to count the wounds with certainty.
Bordelon used a stun gun to keep Young, who lived in York Township, from leaving his home before killing her, according to Wrightsville Police.
Found in shed: Officers responding to Bordelon's home on April 19, 2015, found Young's body in a locked shed in Bordelon's yard, documents state. It appeared that she had been dragged there, preliminary hearing testimony indicated.
Police allege Stover and Bordelon exchanged texts about him killing Young.
Police also say Stover helped Bordelon move Young's car away from his home, then drove him to Home Depot to buy bleach and lime.
— Reach Liz Evans Scolforo at email@example.com or on Twitter at @LizScolforoYD.