Man Gets 50 Years For Hit-And-Run Killing Of Iowa Instructor

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A Des Moines man police accused of intentionally running over and killing a local college instructor has been sentenced to 50 years in prison.

Jason Sassman, 50, was sentenced Monday after being convicted in February of second-degree murder in the April 5, 2020, death of 38-year-old Lauren Rice, television station KCCI reported.

Police have said Sassman was using meth when he intentionally ran over Rice as she walked her dog, which also died in the incident. Rice was an instructor at Des Moines Area Community College.

Sassman told investigators he ran down Rice because he believed she was a criminal about to kill someone, police said.

Prosecutors charged Sassman with first-degree murder in the case, but a jury found him guilty of the lesser second-degree murder count. The jury acquitted him of a second count of animal abuse.