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EDWARDSVILLE, Ill. (AP) -- An Illinois woman was sentenced to 45 years in prison for the murder of a pregnant, developmentally impaired mother. Police say the victim was beaten, burned and used for target practice.
Thirty-seven-year-old Michelle Riley pleaded guilty in October to first-degree murder in the death of 29-year-old Dorothy Dixon.
The sentence imposed Friday in Madison County Circuit Court was the maximum allowed in a deal reached between defense and prosecutors.
Both sides labeled the victim's death horrific, but Riley's attorney argued for a 30-year sentence, saying others took part in the torture.
Before being sentenced, Riley apologized, saying she wished she could turn back the clock.
Investigators say Dixon was a mother with a childlike mind and another baby on the way when she was found dead in January 2008 in Alton.
Four other people await trial on first-degree murder charges.
(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)