Man gets 15 years for manslaughter in cabbie's death

Posted: Friday, August 18, 2000

FAIRBANKS (AP) -- A judge sentenced a man to 15 years in prison for beating a Fairbanks cab driver to death last year.

During sentencing Thursday, Superior Court Judge Jane Kauvar said it was ''incomprehensible'' why John Holloway killed Maurice Lee Smith.

''All he'd really done that night was give someone a free ride around town. He was killed for that,'' Kauvar said.

Holloway, 30, is the last of three defendants to be sentenced and the only one to have a jury trial. He was acquitted of first-and second-degree murder but was convicted of the lesser charge of manslaughter and tampering with evidence.

Like Dale Depue Jr., who also received a 15-year prison term, Holloway could be released in 10 years. Shawn Aldridge, the third member of the group, was sentenced to 20 years.

Depue and Aldridge accepted plea agreements and turned state's evidence against Holloway. They said Holloway convinced them to go after Smith because of alleged comments he made about young girls. Depue concocted a story to get Smith to drive them to a remote area where he was attacked.

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