A Springfield woman accused of helping a killer dispose of a woman’s body after a slaying pleaded guilty to charges.
Hannah Whitman, 35, pleaded guilty to one count of tampering with evidence, a third-degree felony and one count of gross abuse of a corpse, a fifth-degree felony. She faces a maximum of four years in prison, Clark County Assistant Prosecutor Andrew Picek said.
Whitman was charged in connection with the murder of Tiffany Chambers, a Jacksonville woman who was killed by Prentiss Hare in 2015. Whitman was dating Hare at the time, witnessed Chambers’ murder and helped dispose of her body, according to police.
Hare pleaded guilty to Chambers murder last month, the second murder he’s been convicted of.
It is believed by Clark County prosecutors that Chambers was killed because she witnessed the killing of Michael Fraizer, a Jacksonville man. No one faces criminal charges in that case, and Florida prosecutors haven’t revealed if they have plans to prosecute Hare for it.
Clark County Municipal Court records say police learned Chambers went with Hare to Springfield from Jacksonville in July 2015.
Here, she was led into an alley behind a West Pleasant Street business and killed by Hare, according to prosecutors. Whitman was present for that killing and then worked with Hare to hide her body in a wooded area in Greene County, prosecutors believe.
Chambers’s skeleton remains were eventually found by a mushroom hunter in May 2016.
Whitman is due back in Clark County Common Pleas Court on June 15 when she will be sentenced, according to court records. A phone call to her attorney, Shawn Thomas, was not returned Thursday.
Jonathan Lary, a longtime friend of Tiffany Chambers, told the Springfield News-Sun he would like to know if Whitman helped Hare because she wanted to or if it was because she was scared of him.
Lary described Hare as scary, noting that during his sentencing for Chamber’s murder he smiled.
“He looks crazy; he smiles when he gets to the booth like its funny he murdered people,” Lary said.
However, regardless as to why Whitman helped Hare hide his friend, Lary says it was wrong.
“It’s messed up because they threw away like a piece of garbage,” Lary said. “It’s inhumane. Animals could have gotten to her. It’s terrible.”
Chambers is Hare’s second victim . Hare was convicted in 2016 of murdering Deshun Lumford, a man he choked to death over drugs and money. Prosecutors have also said Hare is a person of interest in the homicides of four Springfield women dating back to 2006 through 2008.
The Springfield News-Sun reported first that Hare and one of those women, Buffy Jo Freeman, were friends before her death.
Hare is already serving two possible life sentences for the murder convictions.
Thank you for reading the Springfield News-Sun and for supporting local journalism. Subscribers: log in for access to exclusive deals and newsletters.
Thank you for supporting in-depth local journalism with your subscription to the Springfield News-Sun. Get more news when you want it with email newsletters just for subscribers. Sign up here.