CLERMONT COUNTY, Ohio (WKRC) - Kristy Harris was 19-years-old when her fiancé found her body in the backyard of the home where they lived in Clermont County.
Don Mills said he found her lying on her back with a booze bottle in her hand. The coroner said she choked on her vomit after drinking too much. Kristy's family said she rarely drank. The horrifying way she died was revealed after Kristy's body was exhumed. Another coroner found a blade of grass in her throat. Kristy's face was held down on the ground until she sucked up a blade of grass gasping for air.
Kristy Harris was murdered.
That was 1994. Don Mills was convicted of killing her in 1996. He went to prison for 15 years to life but said the jury got it wrong. Now, he's saying the jury got it right. The parole board likes it when killers admit what they did.
Daniel Breyer was the prosecutor who convicted Mills of murder, "Remorse, the parole board takes it into consideration. But where was it when it happened, where was it through the trial and for the first 10-15 years in prison? None, none."
Mills will be up for parole again in July 2016. Every time that happens, Kristy's family goes before the parole board members to argue he should not get out of prison.
Kristy's mother, Patty Brannum, said, "How is this fair to have to relive this after 20 years? I'm seeing her buried, seeing them bring her back up, I'm seeing this, I have to relive it again."
Mills sent Patty, Breyer and the judge letters that said he and Kristy got into an argument, he lost his temper and killed her. He doesn't mention in the letters that he had a girlfriend, was upset about not getting custody of their daughter and having to pay child support. Kristy and Don were splitting up, the night she was killed was the night she planned to leave.
Brannum said, "He said he got scared. I thought, 'He got scared?' How scared to you think she was, how scared was Kristy?"
Patty told the parole board 20 years was not justice for her daughter's murder. There's a petition fighting Mills' release. To Kristy's family, justice for Kristy's life would be life in prison for Don Mills. He was apparently a model prisoner and found God. He told the parole board when he gets out he plans to live at a home 4 miles from Brannum's home.
Brannum said Kristy and Don's daughter was afraid of her father. She was there when her mother was killed.
CLICK HERE to sign the petition that will go to the parole board before Don Mills' hearing in July.