The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

State News

December 5, 2013

Westmoreland County woman convicted in disabled woman’s torture

GREENSBURG — The fourth of six people accused in the February 2010 torture-murder of a mentally disabled woman has pleaded guilty and been sentenced to 40 to 80 years in prison.

Twenty-three-year-old Amber Meidinger, of Greensburg, was sentenced Wednesday after pleading guilty to third-degree murder.

She cooperated with Westmoreland County prosecutors, who determined she was somewhat less culpable for the treatment of 30-year-old Jennifer Daugherty who was held captive and tortured over two days before she was choked and fatally stabbed.

The two men who actually killed Daugherty, 27-year-old Ricky Smyrnes, and 24-year-old Melvin Knight, are on death row for first-degree murder. Twenty-one-year-old Angela Marinucci, who was only 17 at the time, is serving a life sentence.

Two other co-defendants are scheduled to plead to third-degree murder later this month.


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What is the biggest key to reducing gun violence in Johnstown?

Tackling the area's drug problem.
Controlling folks moving into city housing.
Monitoring folks in treatment centers and halfway houses.
Tougher sentencing by the court system.
More police on the streets.

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