Woman who killed random shopper in supermarket gets life

Connor MacCalister, 31, of Saco, is led the into courtroom at the York County Courthouse, Thursday, Oct. 8, 2015, in Alfred, Maine. MacCalister, accused of fatally stabbing a stranger in a Maine supermarket, pleaded guilty to murder and requested a life sentence on Thursday, disregarding her lawyer's recommendation that she use an insanity defense.

Connor MacCalister, 31, of Saco, is led the into courtroom at the York County Courthouse, Thursday, Oct. 8, 2015, in Alfred, Maine. MacCalister, accused of fatally stabbing a stranger in a Maine supermarket, pleaded guilty to murder and requested a life sentence on Thursday, disregarding her lawyer's recommendation that she use an insanity defense. Ben McCanna/Portland Press Herald via AP

ALFRED, Maine (AP) — A woman who stabbed a random shopper to death in the ice cream aisle of a supermarket was sentenced Monday to life in prison.

Connor MacCalister had told police she was angry with life and had gone to the store to kill “several random people.” According to court records, she acknowledged being “off (her) meds” when she killed 59-year-old Wendy Boudreau in August at a Shaw’s supermarket in Saco, where they both lived.

MacCalister, 31, entered her guilty plea in October over the objection of her lawyer, who wanted to use an insanity defense. MacCalister was sentenced in York County Superior Court in Alfred, where several members of Boudreau’s family and friends spoke prior to sentencing about the horror of grappling with the sudden death of their loved one.

“Those poignant moments, when I realize she is really gone, are paralyzing,” said Jessie Boudreau, Wendy’s daughter, who added that MacCalister’s “actions cracked the very foundation of our family and the Saco community.”

Last month, MacCalister’s attorney, Robert LeBrasseur, said MacCalister wanted to plead guilty to “make this easier on Mrs. Boudreau’s family and friends.” The guilty plea required LeBrasseur to argue in favor of a life sentence, which he did. MacCalister rose briefly during the sentencing to apologize to Boudreau’s family and friends.

“I hope you have good memories of her,” she said. “I’m sorry.”

The sentencing brings an end to a case that shocked the quiet seaside city and led to public expressions of grief, including a well-attended funeral at Saco’s Thornton Academy, where Boudreau had worked in the alumni office.

Assistant Attorney General Leane Zainea said MacCalister’s initial plan was to kill one person, take another hostage and then kill the hostage when police arrived. Zainea said MacCalister had been planning the attack for a month.

There was no indication that Boudreau and MacCalister knew each other, and the affidavit said MacCalister claimed Boudreau had “looked at me funny” at the scene.

MacCalister is a transgender man who was born Tanisha Hopkins. She asked to be referred to as a woman in her recent court appearances. An exam report stated that she wants to be placed in a female jail and that she has stopped taking testosterone.

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