Marcus Hightower sentenced in deaths of his girlfriend and her 4-year-old daughter

Posted at 1:04 PM, Nov 30, 2016
and last updated 2016-11-30 18:29:40-05

A Detroit man was sentenced Wednesday in the killing of his girlfriend and her four-year-old daughter.

The victim's family doesn't think the sentence fits the crime.

Marcus Hightower was given 50 to 75 years in prison.

In court, he admitted to stabbing his girlfriend, Heidi Walker, twice in the neck then suffocated her daughter Savannah with a pillow.

The crimes happened back in February.

Police say the mother and daughter were reported missing by family in Livingston County, but an Amber Alert wasn't issued for five days.

Their bodies were found in an abandoned house that was set on fire. Heidi's sister holly addressed the judge.

"I think he should have gotten life. I don't think he should be eligible for parole in 50 years, but that doesn't mean he's going to get out," Holly Cauchi said.

Hightower will be 85 years old when he is eligible for parole after serving the minimum 50-year sentence.

He also addressed the courtroom, saying he was recently diagnosed with bi-polar disorder and blamed lack of treatment for the crimes.

He apologized to the victim's family and asked for forgiveness.