SALISBURY, NC (WBTV) - A man who fatally stabbed his girlfriend in 2013 and then used her blood to draw a heart on the wall at the Magistrate's office has now pleaded guilty to murder.
Tony Lamont Luther walked into the Magistrate's office the night of May 23 at around 6:25 and said that he had stabbed his girlfriend inside an apartment.
Before going inside he used the woman's blood to draw a heart with initials in it on the side of the building.
Officers went to an apartment on the 300 block of Calhoun Street, near the intersection of MLK, where they found the body of 28-year-old Tasha Nicole West with an apparent stab wound.
He was charged with Murder and placed in the Rowan County Detention Center under no bond.
On Friday Luther pleaded guilty to murder as part of a plea agreement and was sentenced to life without parole. Luther pleaded guilty in order to avoid the possibility of the death penalty.
In court, Rowan County District Attorney Brandy Cook outlined the case against Luther, describing the night that Luther went into a jealous rage because West was dating someone else.
Cook read Luther's statement given to police that night in which he said "I blanked, I lost it," and admitted stabbing West in the chest. In the statement he told police that West's last words were "what are you doing Tony?"
Cook also read a letter written by one of West's three children, her eleven year old daughter. The girl wrote "I just hurt so much, I hope he is sorry for what he has done."
Attorney James Davis, one of two representing Luther, told the court that Luther was indeed sorry and wanted to offer his "sincere, deepest, most profound apology for his actions."
Davis said that by accepting the plea agreement, Luther was "trying to do something right, to make it right the best that he can."
Davis and attorney Jay White described Luther's difficult childhood, suicide attempts, and an undiagnosed history of mental illness. They said that he is now getting treatment.
"He has been a flawed, flawed individual for a number of years and was not able to get the medical help that he need," White said. "He was lashing out a demons he didn't understand."