A U.S. Army sergeant who killed his wife's lover, decapitated him and took the head to her as she lay in the hospital apologized Saturday to the victim's family.
Sgt. Stephen J. Schap was convicted Friday of premeditated murder, which carries a life sentence. But a jury Saturday recommended he be granted leniency and be given a lesser sentence.Schap choked back tears as he spoke for the first time to the court that convicted him.
"I'm sorry I'm the man responsible," the 26-year-old Baltimore man said.
Schap was convicted of killing Spec. Gregory Glover, 21, one of his buddies at Sickels Army Air Field in Fulda, last Dec. 7 after learning that his wife was pregnant with Glover's baby.
Prosecutors said Schap stabbed Glover repeatedly with an Army survival knife after tracking him to a phone booth where Glover was talking to Schap's wife. Schap partially cut off Glover's head, then kicked it until it came free, prosecutors said.
He then took Glover's head to a hospital where Diane Schap had been admitted for pregnancy problems.
Diane Schap, 26, testified that her husband walked up to her bed and said: "Look, Diane, Glover's here. He'll sleep with you every night, only you won't sleep at night."
The military court found Schap guilty of premeditated murder, rejecting the defense argument that Schap acted in a spontaneous outburst of rage.
Lt. Gen. Jerry Rutherford, commander of the Army's V Corps, has 60 days to sentence Schap.
The jury also demoted Schap to private and stripped him of his pay.
Prosecutor Capt. Jennifer Beakes asked the jury to consider the feelings of the victim's mother, Irene Glover of Phoenix.
"When a mother sends a child off to the Army, she knows he may come back in a body bag,"' Beakes said. "She does not expect her child to come back slaughtered in two pieces, at the hands of a fellow soldier."
Schap apologized to Mrs. Glover, telling her "I know what it means" to be without a loved one.
On the day of the killing, Schap said his wife told him that she had become pregnant by another man and he figured out that it was Glover.
"I felt upset and betrayed," he said. "I trusted my wife."
After finding Glover at the phone booth, Schap said, he at first felt "physically incapacitated."
"I stood there. I felt outside myself. Physically, I felt sick. Things seemed very narrow," he said.
As he killed Glover, "he no longer seemed like Greg. I didn't feel a presence."
After he carried the head to his wife's bedside, he felt "unclean," Schap said. "I wanted very much to hold" her.