robert chambers, preppy killer
Louis Lanzano/AP
Robert Chambers is led in handcuffs into Manhattan criminal court for his arraignment in
a 2007 file photo. (AP)

‘Preppy Killer’ Headed Back to Prison

August 12, 2008 10:11 AM
by Josh Katz
Robert Chambers, the infamous “Preppy Killer” from the 1980s murder case, was sentenced to 19 years in prison after pleading guilty to drug charges.

30-Second Summary

On Monday, Robert Chambers, 41, plead guilty to selling drugs and will receive a 19-year prison sentence instead of the possible life imprisonment.

He was arrested last October at an upper east side, Manhattan apartment with his girlfriend Shawn Kovell, where the two allegedly “peddled cocaine, crack and marijuana,” according to the New York Post.

The Robert Chambers murder case occurred 20 years ago. Chambers, a privileged 19-year-old from New York, stood trial for sexually abusing and murdering Jennifer Levin, 18, in what would be known as the “Preppy Killer” case. Chambers’s lawyer argued that Chambers accidentally killed Levin during violent sex in which she was “the aggressor.” Her body was discovered in Central Park.

In April 1988 he was sentenced to 5–15 years in prison for manslaughter. One month later, “A Current Affair” broadcast a home video of Chambers at a party shortly before his trial, showing him joking and twisting a doll’s head while saying to the camera, “Oops, I think I killed her.” Although Chambers was already sentenced when the video emerged, it served to cement public opinion against him and may have contributed to his being denied parole.

In 2003, Chambers was released from prison after 15 years. He was again arrested in November 2004 for traffic and drug charges in Harlem, and released on $1,000 bail. Then in August 2005, he was sentenced to 100 days in prison for possessing heroin and driving with a suspended license.

Headline Link: Chambers gets 19 years

Background: The crimes of Robert Chambers

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