GloucesterTimes.com, Gloucester, MA

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August 20, 2013

Parents hope for maximum sentence for son's killer

Gloucester man was stabbed in 2011

NASHUA, N.H. — A Gloucester couple whose son was murdered will ask a New Hampshire judge to impose the maximum sentence on their son’s killer tomorrow.

Cathy and Paul Frontiero Jr. will be in Hillsborough County Superior Court South in Nashua along with friends and relatives of their son, Paul Frontiero III, slain two years ago while coming to the aid of his neighbors.

Matthew Packer, 19 at the time of the fatal stabbing in Nashua, will be sentenced after pleading guilty to second-degree murder last month.

“We’re both going to give a statement,” Cathy Frontiero said yesterday of their plans to speak at the sentencing.

The Attorney General’s Office will request the judge impose a 60-year-to-life sentence, which the victim’s parents approve, she said.

“The maximum,” is what Frontiero said she wants in a sentence for Packer.

“It’s been devastating to all of us,” she said. “It just doesn’t make any sense.”

Paul Frontiero III was 27 when he was stabbed outside his Nashua apartment building while helping his 29-year-old neighbors, Jill Arnold and Kathryn Libby, in October 2011.

“We’re both going to give a statement about Paul’s life and how his not being here has affected us,” his mother said. “Hopefully, I will be able to hold it together and speak.”

She will be surrounded by relatives and friends who still struggle to comprehend how Paul Frontiero III lost his life.

Packer’s attorneys are seeking a shorter sentence, 30 years to life, she said.

Prosecutors are looking for more.

“Obviously, they are hoping for the maximum sentence to keep Matthew Packer off the street,” Frontiero said.

The judge must sentence Packer to at least 30 years, but can give him up to 60 years to life, Assistant Attorney General Peter Hinckley said.

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