PHOENIX—Sammantha Allen (D.O.B. 06/14/1988) has received the sentence of death for the murder of her cousin 10-year-old Ame Deal.
“I want to thank the members of the jury for their time and effort on this case and reaching a difficult, but just conclusion for the senseless murder of Ame,” said County Attorney Bill Montgomery.
On July 12, 2011 police were called to a south Phoenix home after Ame was found dead inside a plastic storage box, a place the four adults who lived with Ame claimed she liked to hide. They told investigators the young girl must have fallen asleep inside the box night before.
Later it was determined Sammantha and her husband John Allen forced Ame into a small plastic box almost ½ her height, as punishment and left her overnight where she died from suffocation. Investigators discovered Ame was often subject to painful punishments and poor living conditions by the adults in the home, who included her father, grandmother and her cousins.
Cynthia Stoltzmann, who was Ame’s legal guardian and aunt, was sentenced to 24 years in prison and lifetime probation in September 2013 after pleading guilty to two counts of child abuse and one count of attempted child abuse. Judith Deal, Ame’s grandmother, was sentenced in September 2013 to 10 years in prison and lifetime probation after pleading guilty to two counts of attempted child abuse. David Deal, Ame’s father, was sentenced in June 2013 to 14 years in prison for attempted child-abuse.
The office will not offer further comment until all cases related to Ame’s death are complete.