Sentence reduced in Blaine girl’s murder

Published on Thu, Dec 4, 2008 by Tara Nelson

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Sentence reduced in Blaine girl’s murder

By Tara Nelson

A Thurston County judge has reduced the prison sentence for a man who was convicted of raping and killing a Blaine girl in 2003.

Thurston County Superior Court Judge Richard A. Strophy reduced the sentence of Stephan D. Kaufman, 44, on Monday, to 23 years and nine months for the death of Blaine high school student Ashley Parks, 15, whose remains were found in a wooded area off the Chehalis Western Trail. Kaufman had been previously sentenced to 25 years and four months.

A former part-time high school teacher at North Thurston high school in Lacey, Kaufman met Parks on an internet chat room and later arranged to pick her up from her Blaine home in 2003.

The reduced sentence was the result of a U.S. Supreme Court decision that limited judges discretion in sentencing.