YOKOSUKA, Japan -- Navy prosecutors said today they will seek life imprisonment for Airman Apprentice Terry Helvey after a judge accepted the sailor's guilty plea in the beating death of his homosexual shipmate.
Helvey had been charged with premeditated murder in the death of Allen Schindler, 22, of Chicago Heights, Ill. On May 3, seeking to avoid the death penalty, he pleaded guilty to a lesser charge of committing murder with intent to inflict great bodily harm.
The judge, Navy Cmdr. David Holcombe, accepted Helvey's plea today. The sailor's punishment will now be up to a jury of 13 naval officers.