Indiana man pleads guilty in teen’s rape, murder

File Judge gavel court

JEFFERSONVILLE, Ind. (AP) — A convicted sex offender has pleaded guilty to the rape and killing of a 17-year-old southern Indiana girl.

Forty-nine-year-old Richard Carley Hooten of Clarksville pleaded guilty Thursday to rape, murder and other charges stemming from the March 2013 slaying of Tara Rose Willenborg.

Hooten had previously confessed during a news conference to killing Willenborg in the Clarksville apartment where she had lived with her boyfriend.

Prosecutors had planned to seek the death penalty against Hooten if the case went to trial. But with his guilty plea, Hooten will receive life in prison without parole for the murder charge, a 50-year sentence on charges of rape and being a habitual offender, and 20 years for a criminal deviate conduct charge.

Hooten is scheduled to be formally sentenced next month. provides commenting on many stories to allow for constructive discussion. In order to comment, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms and Conditions. Anyone violating these terms, including the use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinion of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, flag it so our moderators can review.

blog comments powered by Disqus