A Corbin woman who pleaded guilty to the 2017 murder of her boyfriend in Knox County, was sentenced to 20 years in prison at a hearing Wednesday in circuit court.
Debra Poore, 56, was charged with stabbing to death 57-year-old Steven Burke when a verbal dispute turned physical at a residence on Lois Lane, off of Lynn Camp School Road.
Kentucky State Police were initially called to the scene to investigate an assault. However, Burke was pronounced dead at the scene.
Poore was later located on Ky. 80 in Clay County after the car she was dirving had run out of gas.
The car belonged to Burke’s deceased mother.
Burke agreed to cooperate with investigators, admitting that she had stabbed Burke, but was unaware that the wound was fatal when she left the scene.
Burke had pleaded guilty in April to murder in exchange for a prosecutors recommending the minimum 20-year sentence.
Knox Circuit Court Judge Michael O. Caperton accepted the recommendation.
If Caperton had not done so, Poore would have had the option to withdraw her guilty plea and proceeded to trial, or to move forward with sentencing with no plea agreement in place.
Under Kentucky law, murder is a class A felony, carrying a potential prison sentence of 20 to 50 years, or life in prison.
The case did not meet the legal requirements for prosecutors to pursue the death penalty.
Under Kentucky law, the death penalty may only be sought in murder cases involving multiple victims, if the victim is a police officer, in a kidnapping that results in the death of the victim, or when another violent crime is committed in conjunction with the murder such as robbery, rape or burglary.