Lloyd Hill Pleads Guilty to Double Nockamixon Murder
In front of grieving family, HIll sentenced to life without parole in the deaths of Stefanie Hill and Frederick Tarantino Jr. Prosecutor calls Hill -- who fled into Palmer Township -- 'an animal and a coward.'
In a packed Doylestown courtroom filled with family and friends of his victims, Lloyd Hill pleaded guilty this morning -- and escaped the death penalty -- to killing his estranged wife Stefanie Hill and her boyfriend Frederick Tarantino Jr. in January.
Though the court requested onlookers not react to testimony as it was read into evidence, several graphic passages from the Nockamixon Township case brought audible sobs from those who lost their family members. Several in the audience wore buttons with a photo of Tarantino. Others wore a purple ribbon with a heart pattern.
Hil --who worked briefly at the Coopersburg Dunkin' Donuts -- pleaded guilty to two counts of homicide before Bucks County Judge Jeffrey Finley as part of a negotiated plea.
Hill had fled into Palmer Township.
The plea, reached with Bucks County Assistant District Attorney Robert James, pulled the death penalty off the table, a tradeoff James felt was in the best interest of the community.
"We negotiated a [life without parole] plea because we felt it was the right thing to do for his daughters," said James outside the courtroom. "If we had pursued the case, it could have dragged on for another 30 years."
Barely looking up, Hill listened as his daughters read statements about how the loss of their mother has affected their lives.
"You made me see what you did, and left the house like nothing was wrong," said his teenage daughter Marissa Hill. "You scared me. Every time I blink I see it over and over again."
Hill declined to make a statement in court, a move that didn't surprise James.
"Lloyd Hill is an animal and a coward," James said. "What he did was a cowardly act. The only way Hill is leaving the state prison is in a pine box."
Hill also pleaded guilty to first-degree burglary and two counts of possession of an instrument of crime, though no additional penalty was imposed.
The attacks were the culmination of a lifetime of abuse Stefanie Hill endured at the hands of her estranged husband. Court records show domestic violence charges dating back years against Lloyd Hill. Prior to her death, Stefanie Hill sought an protection from abuse order against her husband, but withdrew the request when she realized she would have to disclose her new address to her estranged husband.
But the attempt to hide her whereabouts proved fruitless. James told the court that Hill admitted to driving around the area, looking for Stefanie Hill or Tarantino's car. He located Hill's car the day before the attack.
Police said Hill had attacked Tarantino first -- outside the couple's apartment -- and beat him to death with an aluminum baseball bat. According to the coroner's report, "The first blow was sufficient force [to kill Tarantino]; every blow after was gratuitous." The coroner also stated Tarantino had no defensive wounds.
Hill then entered the apartment building using Tarantino's keys and made his way to the basement apartment where Tarantino and Hill resided. Hill then entered the bedroom in which Stefanie Hill was sleeping and attacked her with a knife.
He then fled the area, driving into both Hellertown and Palmer Township attempting to gather money from ATM machines.
According to the evidence read into the record, Marissa Hill awoke to her mother screaming for help. When she entered her mother's room, she found her mother bleeding and her father in the room. Lloyd Hill then exited the room, walking past his daughter telling her he also killed Tarantino.