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Washington man sentenced to life for killing girlfriend at Kohala hotel

By Associated Press

LAST UPDATED: 2:08 a.m. HST, Dec 13, 2012

A Washington state man who beat his girlfriend to death at a West Hawaii hotel last year has received a life sentence.

West Hawaii Today reported that Philip Howard Zimmerman was sentenced Tuesday for second-degree murder and kidnapping in the death of 44-year-old Susan Brockert at The Fairmont Orchid hotel in South Kohala on May 23, 2011. The Bellevue, Wash., couple was vacationing at the resort when Zimmerman killed his girlfriend.

The life sentence plus another 20 years for kidnapping means that the 47-year-old Zimmerman will never be eligible for parole.

A housekeeper testified that he saw Zimmerman hit his girlfriend with a large piece of granite from the room’s coffee table. Third Circuit Court Judge Ronald Ibarra at sentencing described the murder as especially brutal and heartless.

Zimmerman pleaded guilty in June to murder, kidnapping and criminal property damage.

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