Thomas McClellan, 25, of Holt, was found guilty last month of first-degree murder, first-degree child abuse and first-degree arson in connection to the November 2016 death of Luna Younger, the Lansing State Journal reports.
McClellan, in a taped confession that was played in court during his trial, said he killed the girl while the child’s mother, Victoria King, was at work because she woke him from a nap and told him she was hungry.
“What was so awful about Luna today that you had to kill her?” a detective asked McClellan.
McClellan who had been married to Luna’s mother for just three months at the time was also sentenced to serve between 18 and 30 years on each of the other two charges
After two long pauses and a second question by the detective, McClellan finally relented and said: “I told her it wasn’t dinner time.”
McClellan then tried to shoo the girl out of the room, but she sat down on the floor instead. He then nudged her toward the door, but the girl didn’t comply.
“It tipped me over the edge,” McClellan said. “She gave me more attitude.”
McClellan then admitted to pulling the girl onto the floor of his bedroom before sitting on her and stabbing her in the chest multiple times.
“She cried, and she coughed,” McClellan said when asked how the girl reacted. “Not very long.”
McClellan later covered the girl’s body with blankets and paper towels before dousing it with vodka and setting it on fire.
“happy kindergartener,” Luna Younger was betrayed by those who were supposed to love and protect her
Hungry child murdered because she dared to ask a parent for some food! Thomas McClellan fatally stabbed his 5-year-old stepdaughter, before setting her body on fire, when she asked him for food
Thomas McClellan, [left], in court with his attorney Patrick Crowley on Monday, July 17, 2017.McClellan allegedly stabbed and killed his 5-year-old stepdaughter Luna Younger on Nov. 1, 2016.
A judge also sentenced McClellan to serve between 18 and 30 years on each of the other two charges, with all three sentences running concurrently.
“Tom, I forgive you and I pray for you,” said Paula McKay, a woman who spoke on behalf of the girl’s family. “And I desire peace and hope for you … There exists a sadness like none we have ever known. A sadness at the loss of so many hopes and dreams. Hopes for the future of you and Victoria. Hope for the future of a little girl — our lovely Luna.”
McClelland, meanwhile, declined to speak in court.
“This was wicked act by a man but he’s not a wicked man,” his attorney, Patrick Crowley, said. “I can’t say enough how unfortunate this is for multiple families.”