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Arkansas man sentenced for shooting and killing woman, driving body in suitcase across country

Posted on 09/03/2020
David Houston-Harvey MugshotAn Arkansas man will spend three decades behind bars in a Colorado prison after admitting to killing a woman in Weld County in 2017.

A Weld judge sentenced David Houston-Harvey, 26, Wednesday to 35 years in the Colorado Department of Corrections.

In May of last year, the Weld Grand Jury indicted Houston-Harvey on four felony charges including:

COUNT ONE: MURDER IN THE FIRST DEGREE (F1)

COUNT TWO: MURDER IN THE SECOND DEGREE (F2)

COUNT THREE: ROBBERY (F4)

COUNT FOUR: AGGRAVATED MOTOR VEHICLE THEFT IN THE FIRST DEGREE (F5)

The defendant is accused of shooting and killing Laramie Cline from Ozark, Alabama. She was 23-years-old when she was killed.

The two were travelling through Weld County from Wyoming to Denver on Interstate 25 in August of 2017 at the time of the murder.

Houston-Harvey told investigators that the victim wanted to stay in Colorado, but he wanted to return to Arkansas or Alabama.

He originally told investigators that the victim pointed her gun at him. He said he reacted by grabbing the gun, causing it to discharge and kill the victim.

However, the defendant later told his girlfriend that he shot and killed the victim when she was asleep.

He then put the victim’s body in his suitcase in the trunk and drove the victim’s car back to Arkansas where he dumped her body.

“When she was taken from me a part of me died along with her,” the victim’s mother, Kim Cline, said. “Laramie could light up a room with her smile. She was beautiful but had no idea that she was. Laramie was a sweet soul.”

Houston-Harvey is currently serving a 12-year prison sentence in the Arkansas Department of Corrections for dumping the victim’s body.

As part of a plea agreement, the defendant pled guilty in June in Weld District Court to Murder in the Second Degree. The parties stipulated to a 35 year sentence in the Colorado DOC, and five years of mandatory parole.

“No amount of prison time will ever bring this victim back nor will it bring peace to her grieving family,” Chief Deputy District Attorney Anthony Perea said. “All cases we prosecute are hard, but this one was especially hard given the facts. This murder was completely senseless, and the defendant robbed this young woman of the rest of her life. He took away a part of her family that they’ll never get back.”

The Colorado sentence will run concurrent to his Arkansas sentence.

Chief Deputy District Attorney Anthony Perea and Deputy District Attorney Christopher Jewkes prosecuted this case.