LAKE COUNTY, Ind. (TCD) -- A 37-year-old man was sentenced to more than 100 years in prison this week for killing his girlfriend in 2018 and setting her body on fire.
According to the Northwest Indiana Times, a Lake County judge ordered Hugh Scott to spend 103 1/2 years in prison. Scott reportedly hit Davita Ward and knocked her out, and then poured gasoline over her body and car and set it on fire in a wooded area. Ward reportedly woke up while the car was ablaze, which caused Scott to shoot her in the head. In the process, his pants reportedly caught fire and he burned his legs.
Court records show a jury found Scott guilty of murder, aggravated battery, battery resulting in serious bodily injury, and arson on March 10. The jury deliberated for about six hours.
The Northwest Indiana Times reports Ward was "burned beyond recognition" when she was found. At one point in their relationship, not long before she was killed, Ward got a root canal and received a temporary tooth. At the second part of the procedure, she reportedly told her dentist that the tooth was knocked out when an "abusive boyfriend" punched her in the face.
Scott’s defense attorney, however, argued there was no physical evidence to connect him to the crime. According to the Northwest Indiana Times, Ward’s DNA was not found in his home. Investigators did not locate gasoline or other lighter fluids either.
Scott reportedly has an extensive rap sheet. The Northwest Indiana Times says the judge mentioned Scott’s 74 felony and misdemeanor counts at the sentencing, which impacted the term.