Freeway shooter sentenced to 3 life terms

Toby Stangel
Toby Stangel

He turned Honolulu’s streets and highways into “killing zones.”

Those were the words right out of a judge’s mouth on Wednesday as killer Toby Stangel was sentenced to three life terms.

Stangel killed Tammy Nguyen, a 54-year-old mother of 10, shattering a loving family.

“I wish there were a way I could change the outcome of June 3, 2011. Truly my heart goes out to the victims and their families. I am very sorry and truly remorseful for my actions,” Stangel said in court.

On Wednesday, parents even offered apologies for what had happened.

“I grieve with heartfelt pain for the loss the Nguyen family will be experiencing for the rest of their lives,” said Karen Stangel, Toby’s mother.

Stangel’s attorney says his client suffers from mental disease, and that for years he did drugs that only made his paranoia worse. According to his attorney, it’s what led to the tragic events in the early morning hours of June 3.

Stangel’s parents were asking for the prison terms to run concurrently, giving him a possibility of parole.

“I’d like to see, I’m asking for a mercy that shows a window of hope that somewhere down the line he could redeem the years that are left for Toby,” said Michael Stangel, Toby’s father.

The judge took many things into account.

“You add those two things together, years of severe substance abuse and carrying a gun around. And what you’ve essentially got is a lethal time bomb just waiting to go off. And unfortunately for Tammy Nguyen, the Nguyen family, and the other victims in this case, the bomb did eventually go off,” Judge Glenn Kim said.

Stangel was sentenced to three consecutive life terms, a mandatory minimum of 60 years.

“What this defendant did is he took the public streets and highways of this beautiful city of ours, and he turned them into literal killing zones,” Judge Kim said.

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