Ex-Stripper Gets 99 Years for Murder

ANCHORAGE, Alaska — One-time exotic dancer Mechele Linehan, 35, was convicted yesterday of conspiring with a lover 12 years ago to kill her fiancé at the time, and sentenced to 99 years in prison.

In what prosecutors painted as a sordid plot of deceit and manipulation modeled after the 1994 film The Last Seduction, Linehan was alleged to have been engaged to no fewer than four men at the time of the murder. She convinced one of the men, John Carlin, to snuff out another, Kent Lippink, in the hopes of collecting the latter's $1 million life insurance policy.

According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, Lippink had discovered Linehan's infidelity just days before his murder and had her removed from the policy as his beneficiary.

Linehan and Carlin went their separate ways following the murder, she marrying an Army doctor and becoming a housewife in Olympia, Wash.; he moving back to his home state of New Jersey and taking a Russian bride.

The case was re-opened in 2004 when Alaska State Police created a cold case unit and a state trooper tracked the pistol used to kill Lippink back to Carlin.

Carlin was sentenced in January for the killing, also receiving a 99-year sentence. In handing down Linehan's sentence, Superior Court Judge Philip Volland said, "In my mind, I can find no principal distinction between the puppet who pulls the trigger and the puppeteer who pulls the strings. In my judgment, Ms. Linehan was the puppeteer who pulled the strings."

To read a more detailed account of the case's events, click here.