- Associated Press - Friday, June 3, 2016

PHOENIX (AP) - A Buckeye man accused of fatally shooting his girlfriend in 2014 has been sentenced to 22 years in prison.

Maricopa County Superior Court officials say Robert Edward Duffell also was sentenced Friday to seven years of intensive probation.

Three months ago, Duffell pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and burglary in the case.

Authorities say Duffell was 17 when he was arrested in late December 2014 in connection with the death of 15-year-old Leah Costa.

The girl’s mother reported her missing on Christmas Eve 2014 and it was believed she ran away with Duffell.

Maricopa County Sheriff’s officials say Costa’s body was later found in the desert near Tonopah with a gunshot wound to the head.

Duffell also was accused of burglarizing a Tonapah home on Dec. 26, 2014.


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