A Minnesota man was convicted of first-degree murder Thursday for beheading his girlfriend in front of several witnesses. Alex Saborit 44, was found guilty in the slaying of America Thayer, 56, in July 2021.
In her ruling, the judge found the "nature of the assault" proved Saborit intended to kill Thayer, and that his possession of the machete, threats made prior to the killing and "tumultuous" relationship "marked by frequent arguments and accusations of abuse" showed premeditation, CBS reported.
The Minneapolis Star Tribune reports that Saborit struck Thayer with an 8-pound dumbbell while they were in a vehicle near downtown Shakopee, then he decapitated her with a machete.
People in other cars and nearby homes saw the attack. One of them shot a video that appeared to show Saborit pull Thayer's body out of the car into the street then pick up her head by the hair.
Saborit and Thayer were on the way to his court appearance for felony charges alleging that he set fire to their apartment in Shakopee during a confrontation with police and that Saborit attacked Thayer after she told him she wanted to end their relationship.
Saborit fled the scene and disposed of the machete along the way. He was arrested about 1 ½ miles away near the TraveLodge Hotel where he was staying.
County Attorney Ron Hocevar said he was pleased with the verdict, and that he expects Saborit to be sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.
"My mom never deserved to have this happen in the first place," Thayer's 42-year-old son, Charles Thayer, said after the verdict, the Star Tribune reported. "This monster deserves to be put away for life."