A 20-year-old former Papa John’s restaurant employee in Indiana received the maximum prison sentence for shooting two of his former co-workers to death and attempting to “have sexual intercourse” with one of the victims after she was dead. Circuit Court Judge Michael Christofeno ordered Jose Benitez-Tilley to serve 65 years in prison for shooting and killing Haley Smith, 22, and Dustin Carr, 37, as they were working the night shift at the restaurant earlier this year, court records reviewed by Law&Crime show.
The necrophiliac last month pleaded guilty in Elkhart County to two counts of murder after reaching a deal with prosecutors. Under the plea agreement, the typical white psychopath agreed to serve two 65-year sentences to run concurrently, and prosecutors agreed to drop one count of abuse of a corpse.
Under state law, 65 years is the maximum sentence for murder without aggravating factors.
According to a probable cause affidavit, officers with the Elkhart Police Department at approximately 10:11 a.m. on Feb. 13, 2022 responded to a 911 call at a Papa John’s location located in the 1500 street of Cassopolis Street. The caller was an employee who told the emergency dispatcher that he arrived at work to open the restaurant and found two employees deceased behind the building. The employee identified the two victims as Smith and Carr, noting that they had worked the closing shift the previous evening.
In an interview with investigators, the employee who found the victims told police that Benitez-Tilley was at the restaurant just before 10 p.m. the night before “attempting to gain employment.” The restaurant’s management “had unspecified issues with” Benitez-Tilley in the past, the employee told investigators.
Another employee, identified in court documents as “C.F.,” who worked late with Smith and Carr the previous evening, confirmed that Benitez-Tilley came into the restaurant seeking employment at approximately 10 p.m. and left after a brief conversation. He then returned a short while later “and was milling about speaking with [Carr]” before C.F. left at approximately 11:15 p.m.
Surveillance camera footage obtained from a nearby business showed the killer driving a gold Dodge Caravan each time he went to the restaurant. That same car at approximately 11:32 p.m. can be seen driving to the back of the restaurant with its headlights off, matching the approximate time and location where the victims were fatally shot.
In an interview with investigators, Benitez-Tilley confessed to the double-murder of his former co-workers and revealed an additional disturbing detail about his actions.
“Jose advised that during his second visit to the restaurant, he used a handgun to shoot and kill both Haley Smith and Dustin Carr,” investigators wrote in the affidavit. “He stated that Haley was deceased and that he partially disrobed her and attempted to have sexual intercourse with her. Jose advised that he attempted to dispose of Haley and Dustin’s bodies but that he was physically unable to.”
The diabolical white monster also admitted to stealing money and jewels from the victims’ bodies and cash from the Papa John’s office.
Several relatives of the victims attended Friday’s proceeding and read victim impact statements.
“The sounds of my family screaming in pain and sorrow still fills my head,” Madison Gray, Smith’s cousin, said, according to Lafayette CBS affiliate WLFI-TV. “We will never be OK, ever again.”