Arizona woman, 29, who locked 10-year-old cousin in trunk, sentenced to death

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The verdict is in: An Arizona woman was sentenced to death Monday in the killing of her 10-year-old cousin, who was locked in a trunk as punishment for stealing a popsicle.

Ame Deal’s death was one of the most shocking murders in recent memory in Arizona. Sammantha Allen became the third woman sentenced to death in the state.

The jury deliberated for more than a week before returning the verdict against Allen. The 29-year-old was convicted in June of first-degree murder and child abuse in the death of her cousin in 2011.

“We the jury duly impaneled and sworn in the above entitled actions upon our oaths having considered all the facts and circumstances unanimously find that the defendant should be sentenced to death.”

Allen put her head down and sobbed as the verdict was read.

Deal suffocated after being locked in a trunk as punishment in triple-digit heat.

“She didn’t care what happened to this child. It was all about what was going to happen to her,” stated a juror. “I was looking for something from her. That was her chance to plead for her life and it just felt short.”

Another juror added, “I think the hardest thing for all of us was the victim and learning about what her life really entailed and the years of abuse that she suffered.”

The jurors all agreed — Allen did not seem to be sorry about her role in Ame’s death.

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Honda Beat looks like it could fit in this MR2 Spyder’s trunk

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There is a whole universe of Kei-class roadsters out there that make the Toyota MR2 Spyder look like a Bentley Azure cabriolet, as one Imgur user found out. The car on the left, of course, is a third-gen MR2, and it easily dwarfs the Honda Beat that one intrepid enthusiast imported into the country via the 25-year-rule.

What does the Beat offer less of, aside from interior room? Less displacement, as the Kei car rules in Japan currently mandate a maximum displacement of 660 cc. This means less oomph for the rear-wheel drive, mid-engined Beat (that’s right, it’s technically mid-engined), which uses an inline-three engine displacing all of 656 cc. That’s good for 63 hp sent to the rear wheels via a five-speed manual transmission, which is enough to scoot it along given its 1,675-lb curb weight. A top speed of 84 mph makes it ready for just about every kind of road trip, except a winter one.



Honda Beat cutaway

The Beat’s three cylinders pump out 63 hp, which is good enough for a top speed of 84 mph. Photo by Honda


Nissan Figaro



These have been making their way to Canada far longer than the U.S., due to Canada’s 15-year-rule for private imports, but since the first year of production for the Beat was 1991 they have been legal in the U.S. for just a couple of years. The larger problem is that there aren’t that many of them in Japan to begin with — six years of production only gave the world just over 33,000 Beats.

Does it make a fun summer roadster? We haven’t driven one, at least not yet, but it has all the ingredients of a fun backroad bomber with a favorable weight distribution, a stiff suspension and the curb weight of a fancy refrigerator, the kind that McMansions now come with. The price of entry isn’t a barrier — these typically retail in the $6,000 to $9,000 range in the U.S. — making it an easy enough proposition. The hard part is finding one, but with a bigger pool of Beats building in the U.S. there are usually a handful for sale at any given time.
 












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