Man guilty but mentally ill in death of girlfriend - KMOV.com

Man guilty but mentally ill in death of girlfriend

BELLEVILLE, Ill. (AP) -- A jury has found a Cahokia man guilty but mentally ill in the December 2009 slashing death of his girlfriend.

The St. Clair County panel deliberated less than an hour last week in the verdict in the case of Kyle Starks.

Starks will be 21 on Wednesday. He was convicted of using a razor knife to slash the neck of 18-year-old Tyra Whittaker. Authorities said at the time they believed the Washington Park woman went to Starks' house to end their relationship when she was killed.

Defense attorneys argued Starks was insane and should be found not guilty. Prosecutors alleged Starks had a mental disease but was legally sane.

A sentencing hearing is set for June 2. Starks' bond is revoked. He faces 20 to 60 years in prison.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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