Man Sentenced For Beating College Student To Death With A Piano Leg

On Sept. 20, 2004, Rebekah Gould, 22, answered the door to a man who asked to use her phone. A week later, her body was found dumped on the side of the road. Her case went cold for over a decade and a half.

October 25, 2022
Rebekah Gould [main] was murdered in 2004. In 2022, William Miller [inset] was sentenced for her murder.

On Sept. 20, 2004, Rebekah Gould, 22, answered the door to a man who asked to use her phone. A week later, her body was found dumped on the side of the road. Her case went cold for over a decade and a half.

Photo by: Dr. Larry Gould [main]; Izard County Sheriff's Office [inset]

Dr. Larry Gould [main]; Izard County Sheriff's Office [inset]

On Oct. 18, 2022, a man from Oregon named William Alma Miller plead guilty to the 2004 murder of Rebekah Gould. He waived his right to a jury trial, and Judge Tim Weaver sentenced him to 40 years in the Arkansas Department of Corrections, reported KY3.

On Sept. 20, 2004, Rebekah Gould, a 22-year-old college student, answered the door to her boyfriend’s home where she was staying, and Miller was standing outside it. He asked to use her telephone and the kind-hearted young woman agreed.

Miller confessed that, while he pretended to use the phone, Gould went into her room. He used that time to grab a piano leg from her living room and then beat her to death with it. He then placed her body in the bed of his truck and dumped it on the side of a highway outside of Melbourne, Arkansas.

This case went cold for over a decade and a half. However, Miller was eventually established as a suspect. Police then tracked Miller down in Oregon and extradited him to Arkansas to face murder charges, according to KAIT.

Judge Weaver called Miller “remorseless and cold” in court, and he expressed his wishes for Miller to serve every day of his sentence. He went so far as to say that he would write an extensive letter opposing any eligibility for parole if the matter ever came up.

Dr. Larry Gould, Rebekah’s father, gave his witness testimony in court and spoke directly to Miller. He spoke of what was lost with the murder, stating, “You took her from her own future. You took away a chance for a girl to dream. A hell you created. A hell you must face.”

He also remembered his daughter with his testimony and said, “Rebekah lives in all of us. Love and grace are words I will remember her by.”

After Miller received his 40-year-sentence he apologized to the Gould family. He said that he would change what happened if he could go back in time. He also said he was sorry and admitted that he needed to go to prison.

Judge Weaver told the Gould family that he hopes they find closure.

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