Matthew Mills was sentenced to two years probation for confronting the family of Sandy Hook teacher Victoria Soto and claiming the massacre was an elaborate hoax. According to reports, Mills insists the 2012 tragedy never happened. He further asserts the hero teacher, who saved the lives of her first-grade students, simply did not exist.
Hundreds of people were in attendance at a Stratford, Connecticut, race which was part of a campaign to kickstart a scholarship fund in Victoria Soto’s name.
During the event, Matthew Mills approached the late teacher’s sister, Jillian Soto, shoving a picture in her face and angrily shouting that the 2012 massacre, which left eight adults and 20 children dead, was a hoax. He further asserted that the woman who sacrificed her life, so others could live, was a figment of everyone’s imagination.
Matthew Mills ran off when police officers arrived on scene but was captured after a brief foot chase. Assistant State’s Craig Nowak said, “we are not going to tolerate this type of behavior.”
According to CT Post, instead of going to trial, the banker pleaded guilty under the Alford Doctrine to a singular count charge of interfering with police business. Under the Alford Doctrine, Matthew Mills did not admit that he was guilty. Instead, he agreed if the trial were to proceed, he may have been found guilty and received a harsher sentence. He was given a suspended one-year term and two years probation by Superior Court Judge William Holden.
— Sonething News (@sonething_news) April 19, 2016
Matthew Mills refused to talk to journalists as he left the courthouse on Golden Hill Street. On behalf of his client, James Hardy said Mills “felt he would have prevailed if the case had gone to trial, but he wanted to put this behind him in the best interest of himself and his family.”
Jillian Soto, who was in the courtroom during Matthew Mills’ plea, refused to comment following the proceedings. According to reports, Jillian was upset about Mills insensitivity and his refusal to leave her and the family alone. Judge Holden warned the defendant to avoid any further contact with the Soto family.
As discussed by Washington Post, the 2012 Sandy Hook massacre was a shooting rampage at an elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut, which left 28 people dead.
The gunman, Adam Lanza, 20, shot and killed his mother, Nancy Lanza, at the home they shared. He then drove his mother’s car to Sandy Hook Elementary school, where she worked as a kindergarten teacher. The young man had three guns with him in the car including a Glock, a Sig Sauer, and a.223 caliber “Bushmaster” rifle.
Adam Lanza entered the school and killed six adults and 20 children in two different classrooms. Police rushed to the scene of carnage and confusion only to find the shooter killed by his own hand.
Victoria Soto, 27, died by putting herself in the line of fire and effectively blocking the bullets meant for her students. Police said the woman was ushering pupils into a storage room when Lanza confronted her and opened fire.
— New Haven Register (@nhregister) April 17, 2016
Ms. Soto was one of four adults who made the ultimate sacrifice for the children in their care. Dawn Hochsprung, 47, Mary Sherlach, 56, and school psychologist Lauren Rousseau, 30, were also shot and killed.
Teachers, Maryrose Kristopik, 50, and Kaitlin Roig, 24, who both survived the shooting, also showed exemplary courage in the face of tragedy.
Kristopik hurriedly huddled 15 children into a storage room — with the gunman banging on the door and screaming “Let me in!” Roig was teaching 15 students when the classroom windows were shattered by gunfire. She responded by rushing the pupils into the bathroom and waited for law enforcement to arrive.
Victoria Soto’s friends and family are happy Matthew Mills’ case is now closed. However, they believe he deserved a harsher sentence, as he has not shown any remorse.
[Image via CD_Photography/Shutterstock]