Man gets 10 to 25 years for killing girlfriend
Anthony Noble pleaded guilty to causing the death of his ex-girlfriend through fatal dose of cocaine
A Phoenixville man pleaded guilty in Montgomery County Court to a charge of thirddegree murder.
NORRISTOWN >> What defendant Anthony Noble once called a “Romeo and Juliet”style suicide pact ended Tuesday in a 10- to 25-year prison sentence for the “Romeo” who survived.
Noble, 27, of the 300 block of Hall Street in Phoenixville, pleaded guilty in Montgomery County Court in front of Judge Garrett D. Page to a charge of thirddegree murder for injecting 27-year-old Joette L. Mullen with a fatal dose of cocaine. The plea was negotiated in exchange for the 10- to 25year sentence.
“I think in many cases it is difficult for the family, because as they said and as the judge said, it won’t bring the victim back, and you just want that person to go away for forever,” said Assistant District Attorney Kathleen McLaughlin. “They also didn’t want to go to trial, so at the end of the day, I think that they are OK with this.”
Mullen’s body was discovered inside her parked Kia Forte at about 9 a.m. on Dec. 14, 2015, at Lock 60 in the Schuylkill Canal Park in Upper Providence. Investigators stated that Mullen was inside the locked car, showing no signs of life, with fresh needle tracks in her arm.
Noble, who had briefly dated Mullen, was questioned by detectives, and stated that Mullen wanted to die, and that they planned on ending their lives together. Noble told police he backed out of the pact after watching Mullen seize before passing away.
Prosecutors stated that Noble attempted to cover up his actions, attempting to make the scene appear as if Mullen overdosed on her own, before admitting his role in her death.
“There were periods where she was seizing and he injected her again, ensuring that she would die,” McLaughlin said. “There was a wickedness of heart when he did this, to watch somebody suffer and to do it again instead of get help, and on top of that he cleaned up the scene and left.”
Mullen’s mother, Linda Ward, spoke during the hearing of being plagued by questions and anger.
“Who appointed him executioner?” she read from a letter she had written for the court. “Why my Joey? Why? I lay awake at night and keep asking myself why.”
Ward looked at Noble when she spoke of her daughter’s murder.
“She was planning on a career in health care, and she was robbed of a medical career that she was so well suited for. The right to a future, the right to marry, to have children, to give me grandchildren were taken away when she was left in the front seat of a car, abandoned to die,” Ward said.
She added that Mullen’s slippers still sit by the front door in her house, “waiting for her to come home.”
Noble quietly addressed her during his chance to speak during the sentencing hearing.
“I’m sorry. I wish I could take it all back. I just wish I could take it all back but I can’t,” he said.
The judge warned Noble that he would not likely get out after the lower end of his sentence of 10 years, but is more likely to serve closer to the 25-year maximum on the sentence. He also ordered Noble to undergo a drug, alcohol and mental health evaluation and comply with any recommendations put forth.
“You need to do something in life to make sure nobody else gets put in the position that you are in and that you put their daughter in,” Page said.