A man who strangled his on-again, off-again girlfriend and dumped her body along a rural East County road was sentenced Wednesday to 35 years to life in state prison.
David Charles Williams Jr., 45, pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in the death of 35-year-old Christine Crosby of Lakeside.
The victim's body was found July 29, 2011, in a shallow grave along Old Highway 80 in Boulevard.
Deputy District Attorney Chantal de Mauregne said witnesses saw the couple together on July 5, 2011, but the victim was never heard from again.
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About a month before Crosby was killed, Williams was arrested for roughing her up, the prosecutor said.
The defendant was subsequently freed on bail, and the case was dismissed because Crosby disappeared.
Williams was arrested for Crosby's murder a year ago.
De Mauregne said Williams and Crosby dated for about six months and were living together at the time of her death.
A motive was not disclosed, although the victim and the defendant had been known to break up and then re-unite.