Life sentence for man who killed Manitowoc father, daughter

A man convicted of killing a father and his teenage daughter at the victims' Manitowoc home has been sent to prison for life.

Karl Hess continues to maintain his innocence in the fatal shooting of 51-year-old Richard Miller and 19-year-old Jocelyn Miller. The 38-year-old Appleton man was found guilty in June of two counts of first-degree intentional homicide.

A criminal complaint says Hess had significant financial difficulties and planned to kill Richard Miller and take a large amount of cash he knew was being kept in the home.

Hess told detectives he went to Miller’s residence with a handgun and waited for others to leave for the night, then shot Miller twice in the head, according to the complaint.

Hess said he heard noises from Jocelyn Miller’s room and found her crying beneath her comforter, told her to be quiet and shot her, prosecutors said.

Authorities said the Millers had been dead two days before their bodies were found Sept. 9, 2018.

Manitowoc County Judge Jerilyn Dietz described Hess’ crimes as "cold-blooded murders" before she sentenced him to two consecutive life sentences without the possibility of extended supervision.

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Hess spoke directly to family and friends of the victims who had gathered in the Manitowoc County courtroom for sentencing Friday.

"I want you to know that I pray for you all every night," he said.

While Hess did not admit any role in the deaths when he spoke, he claimed he had accepted the fact that a lot of people will never believe him.

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