Ind. appeals court upholds man's 60-year sentence

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The Indiana Court of Appeals has upheld a southern Indiana man's 60-year prison sentence for beating his girlfriend to death with a crowbar.

The Princeton Daily Clarion reports the court ruled Thursday that 68-year-old Robert P. Spangler's sentence was "not inappropriate" despite his mental illness, remorse in the killing and lack of a prior criminal history.

Spangler was sentenced this summer in Gibson Circuit Court to 60 years after pleading guilty but mentally ill to murder in Pat Heichelbach's November 2010 killing. Spangler's attorney argued for a 45-year term.

Spangler admitted beating Heichelbech with a crowbar at his Fort Branch home in November 2010.

Heichelbech's daughter, Sherry Heichelbech, testified at Spangler's sentence that he "should never be allowed to walk among good and decent people again."

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