Judge gives murderer life in prison

A Prince William Circuit Court judge upheld a jury-recommended sentence of life in prison for a 51-year-old man who was found guilty of brutally beating his live-in girlfriend to death.

Allan L. Rother told the court that he loved Rosemary Tascione, who was 55 when she died. During his statement to the court, Rother described how they would build jigsaw puzzles together and how they loved to garden.

He said he went into shock on the night of Nov. 6, 2000 when he entered the trailer the two shared in the Forest Park Mobile Home Village and found Tascione dead. Prosecutors alleged, however, that it was Rother who killed his girlfriend.

“Rosemary was the best thing that ever happened to me in my life. We kept to ourselves because we were in love,” Rother said. “When I found the way she was brutally beaten to death, that was beyond my capability. I wouldn’t dream of it, it is completely bizarre.”

Tascione was found dead Nov. 7 in an alley off 1275 K. St. in Washington, D.C. According to reports from the medical examiner, the cause of death was blunt force trauma to her neck and torso. She also had numerous broken bones, including 10 broken ribs and breaks in her neck and spine. Her breast had also been cut off.

When he was questioned by detectives, Rother claimed he had come home from work and found Tascione dead in her bed. He said he became scared and put her body in his car.

“I don’t know what happened; maybe I was chicken,” Rother said in court when he explained why he dumped the body in a District alley. “I don’t know why I didn’t want to dial 911 when I found that she had been beaten to death.”

During Rother’s March trial, prosecutors presented evidence that Tascione’s blood has been found on objects inside the trailer the couple shared and in Rother’s station wagon.

When Rother was questioned on Nov. 10 by police detectives, they began to press Rother on what had happened that night. At one point he broke down and told the detectives that he was a “monster,” and that he was going to jail for “20 years.”

During his sentencing hearing, Rother’s attorneys described to the court how their client suffered from alcoholism, and his criminal history contained no past violent acts; however, it did contain two convictions for driving while intoxicated.

They also described their client as depressed and suicidal in jail and requested he be mentally evaluated before the formal sentencing took place.

Judge William D. Hamblen denied the request and said Rother had received a fair trial.

Rother’s attorneys said they will appeal the case.

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