A 51-year-old woman in Florida will spend the rest of her life behind bars for brutally killing her physically disabled boyfriend, cutting up his remains, and keeping them in her camper for nearly six months before she was caught.
Sumter County Circuit Court Judge Mary P. Hatcher on Friday handed down the maximum sentence on all three counts against Penny Rebecca Pospisil, including life in prison for one count of second-degree murder in the 2018 slaying of 55-year-old Anthony Mitchell, court records reviewed by Law&Crime show.
In addition to the life sentence, Judge Hatcher also ordered Pospisil to serve consecutive sentences of 15 years for abuse of a dead human body and five years for grand theft of more than $300 but less than $20,000.
Authorities said that Pospisil killed Mitchell late in the summer of 2018 while at the Lake Pan RV Village in Sumter County. She then drove the body approximately two hours to Brevard County where she lived for approximately five months in the vehicle still containing Mitchell’s decomposing body. She was finally arrested on Dec. 30, 2019, after neighbors continually complained about malodorous stench coming from the RV.
Authorities said that Pospisil told those inquiring as to Mitchell’s whereabouts that he had died of natural causes and was cremated. After her arrest, she claimed that she killed Mitchell in self-defense and was a victim of abuse, but she ultimately pleaded guilty to all three charges against her in October 2022.
In a sentencing memo filed earlier this month, prosecutors argued that Pospisil deserved the maximum sentence for her “especially brutal and heinous” slaying of Mitchell, who suffered “violent blunt force trauma injuries from a weapon” before he was strangled to death. After he was dismembered postmortem, Pospisil also “intentionally degraded” Mitchell’s body tissue “to the point that he was unrecognizable,” prosecutors wrote.
“Notably absent from the crime scene was his heart and other internal organs,” the memo states. “Anthony Mitchell’s genitals were severed from his decaying body as well. This was a vicious and abhorrent killing that was further underscored by the Defendant’s ongoing efforts to conceal the crime, including her workman-like dismemberment and forced body degradation, moving the crime scene from Sumter County to Brevard County, fabricating numerous explanations of the smell emanating from the camper told to park neighbors in both counties, and the continuous acquisition of tools and chemicals to dismember and conceal the victim’s dead body.”
Additionally, prosecutors emphasized that Pospisil profited from killing Mitchell by stealing the dead man’s credit cards, accessing his bank accounts, and collecting his social security benefits postmortem.
Pospisil’s attorney, Christopher Lance Shropa of the Fifth Circuit Public Defender’s Office, did not immediately respond to a message from Law&Crime inquiring as to whether his client has any plans to appeal her sentence.
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