But he could be eligible for parole in 15 years.
Frederick, Md (KM). Sentencing was handed down Wednesday in Frederick County Circuit Court to a man convicted of the murder of a teenager more than 20 years. Lloyd Arbard Harris, 54, was given life in prison for 1st-degree murder for the slaying of 15-year-old Stacy Lynn Hoffmaster. He was also given a concurrent life sentence for 1st degree rape and 3rd-degree sex offense. Both of those two latter charges were combined.
State’s Attorney Charlie Smith says the prosecution wanted Harris to get life without the possibility of parole, which he would be eligible for in 15 years. “We wanted absolutely no possibility whatsoever for this guy to get out of jail. We didn’t get that. We respect the judge’s sentence. We just disagree with it,’ he said.
Hoffmaster was reported missing by her family in October, 1996. Her body was found in December of that year in a wooded are near the Southern State’s on East South Street. Police say she was strangled.
The homicide went unsolved for a long time until Harris was arrested as a suspect in January, 2016 at a motel in Kansas City, Missouri.
He was brought back to Frederick and underwent a trial. Harris was convicted in November, 2017 of 1st-degree murder, 1st-degree rape and 3rd-degree sex offense.
Throughout his trial and even during his sentencing, Harris maintained his innocence. “He showed absolutely no remorse at his sentencing, no remorse at all,” says Smith. “He denied what he did, continually. He demeaned not only the family, but the 15-year-old murder victim at the time, stating that sex with her was unremarkable because she didn’t engage in his oral fetish as he said on the record.”
But Smith says this sentence does bring closure to the victim’s family. “Obviously, a case like this it does bring some degree of closure. The person responsible for murdering her has been held responsible and is going to jail on a life sentence. But nothing will ever bring back Stacy Lynn Hoffmaster to their life,” he says.
Smith says Harris will be eligible for parole in 15 years, but there is only a “small possibility” Harris could be released form prison. A parole board would have to recommend it and a future governor would have to sign on to it.
By Kevin McManus