- Dea Millerberg, 41, accepted a plea deal for her part in the death of Alexis Rasmussen, 16, in 2011
- Millerberg and her husband, Eric Millerberg, 38, were involved in a Methamphetamine-fueled sexual relationship with Rasmussen
- Eric Millerberg was found guilty of the rape and murder of Rasmussen in February
- He injected Rasmussen with lethal amounts of Methamphetamine and heroin in September, 2011 after a night of sex
- When the girl died , Millerberg and his wife Dea dumped her body in a rural river bed
- Millerberg testified against her husband – which helped to secure a lenient sentence
The Utah woman accused of helping her white supremacist husband dump their teenage baby sitter in the woods wept as she pleaded guilty on Wednesday to desecration of a human body and other charges as part of a plea deal.
Dea Millerberg, 41, whispered ‘guilty’ to three felony charges while crying in an Ogden court, The Standard-Examiner of Ogden reports.
She also pleaded guilty to obstruction of justice and obtaining a prescription illegally.
Millerberg is scheduled to serve one to five years on each charge, with the time running concurrently, pending a judge’s formal approval of the deal at a sentencing August 21.
Dea Millerberg and her husband, Eric Millerberg, 38, had a drug-fueled, salacious sexual relationship with 16-year-old Alexis Rasmussen that led to her death from an overdose in 2011, prosecutors said.
Eric Millerberg was found guilty by a jury in February of child-abuse homicide, unlawful sexual contact with a minor, obstruction of justice and desecration of a dead body.
He was sentenced to up to life in prison – the maximum amount allowed under the state’s guidelines.
Weber County Attorney Dee Smith said Wednesday that he considered the plea bargain was a fair deal considering that Millerberg helped prosecutors get her husband convicted.
During a three-day trial in February, prosecutors brought detectives, medical examiners, prisoners and Dea Millerberg to the stand to show that Eric Millerberg recklessly injected Rasmussen with lethal doses of heroin and methamphetamine during a night of sex and drugs.
Rasmussen had seven times the lethal amount of methamphetamine in her system and high levels of morphine and amphetamines, and that likely caused her death, a medical examiner said.
A full autopsy could not be performed because Alexis’ body was so decomposed, but significant traces of heroin and meth were in her system.
Prosecutors told jurors that Eric Millerberg and his wife then dumped Rasmussen’s body in the woods of northern Utah while lying to police as the girl’s mother desperately searched for her for more than a month.
Eric Millerberg was sentenced to life in March for child abuse homicide – a first-degree felony and one to 15 years for obstructing justice, a second-degree felony.
He was also sentenced to two terms of zero to five years for the unlawful and statutory rape of a 16-or-17-year-old – and abuse or desecration of a human body, third-degree felonies.
The sentences are consecutive.
On his part, Millerberg, 38, showed no sign of emotion as the judge sentenced him for killing Lexi Rasmussen, 16, by injecting her with a lethal dose of drugs in September of 2011.
Millerberg’s wife Dea was also in the house at the same time getting high when Rasmussen fell unconscious and died.
The two grabbed her body, stuffed it in to a trash bag, bundled it in the trunk of their car and dumped it in a remote rural location. Rasmussen was found 38 days later.
Dea said the couple started using Alexis – or Lexi as she called her – as a babysitter for their two daughters in the spring of 2011.
They became friends and started drinking alcohol and smoking marijuana with the teen before Alexis began requesting that they try harder drugs like methamphetamine and heroin. Eventually they began paying Alexis with meth.
According to Salt Lake Tribune, Dea testified that on the night of the girl’s death, she had picked up Alexis to baby sit her kids.
She said as soon as Alexis arrived at the house, Eric Millerberg helped her get high by injecting her with drugs – once with heroin and twice with meth – into her arm and neck.
Then, when she was ‘as high as she had ever been’, the girl and Eric Millerberg performed oral sex on one another. Dea said that she was not involved in the encounter.
A short while later, the drugs had a negative effect on the teen and she started ‘freaking out’. She reportedly felt disoriented and cold, so she asked if she could take a warm bath in the couple’s master bathroom.
After leaving her alone in the bath at her request, the Millerbergs checked on her about 45 minutes later to find that she was still cold, so Dea wrapped her in a blanket and told her to lie down in another bedroom.
The couple left her to smoke cigarettes, and returned about a half hour later to find her unresponsive.
‘She wasn’t breathing. She had mucousy stuff coming out of the right side of her mouth,’ said Dea, who was a licensed nurse and tried to resuscitate the girl to no avail.
They then tried to figure out what to do next.
‘It really was a panic. The idea of it was, we will lose our kids and go to jail, and there was nothing we could do to bring her back,’ she told the court.
Eric Millerberg was on parole at the time for burglary and firearm charges, and he was also known to be part of the Silent Aryan Warriors, a white supremacist prison gang.
The girl was found with her legs folded against her in a fetal position, her lower half stuffed into a garbage bag.
Utah assistant medical examiner Joseph White testified on Friday that the girl’s body was so badly decomposed, it was difficult to identify her. Dental records and a fingerprint analysis finally led to a positive identification.
A toxicologist testified that reports showed she had ingested meth at least 24 hours before her death.