HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - A judge sentenced convicted murderer Toby Stangel to three life terms for a shooting rampage in June, 2011, that killed a Palolo woman and wounded two other people.
At his sentencing Wednesday, his attorney told Circuit Court Judge Glenn Kim that paranoia caused Stangel to pull the trigger multiple times.
"When he approached the stop light and voices told him that it was either killed or be killed -- people were out there trying to kill him and they were going to do that," John Schum said.
Stangel read from a prepared statement. He told the judge he deserves prison time and he apologized.
"It replays in my mind all the time. Why? Why did this happen? Why could not I have been the one to lose my life?" he said. "Truly my heart goes out to the victims and their families. I'm very sorry and truly remorseful for my actions."
Stangel fatally shot 54-year-old Tammy Nguyen as she sat in her mini-van at a red light. He also fired his gun at motorists as he drove on the H-1 freeway. The crime scene stretched from Kaimuki to Aiea. Kim called Stangel an extremely dangerous person.
"You add those two things together: years of severe substance abuse and carrying a gun around, and what you've essentially got is a lethal time bomb just waiting to go off," he said.
He ordered that Stangel serve the three life sentences consecutively. Each carries a mandatory minimum time in prison of 20 years.
"Somebody is dead," deputy prosecutor Dwight Nadamoto said. "You're going around carrying a loaded firearm. You know you're not supposed to. Not only is it loaded it has more than ten rounds in it."
Stangel is a pastor's son. He told the court that he has found faith behind bars.
"God is helping me change negative ways and be a positive influence for others," he said.
Nguyen was the mother of ten. Her husband and children wept as they left the courtroom.
Stangel is 30 years old. He will be close to 90 before he can be considered for parole.