20 November 2017 :
John Allen was sentenced to death in the 2011 death of a 10-year-old girl who was locked in a storage box in sweltering summer heat.
Jurors in Maricopa County Superior Court deliberated for only a few hours before deciding that John Allen should get the death penalty. The jury previously determined that Ame Deal's death was especially cruel or heinous. In addition to the death verdict, Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Erin O'Brien Otis sentenced Allen to 60½ years in prison for the three child-abuse counts and the one count of conspiracy to commit child abuse. His 28-year-old wife, Sammantha Allen, was a cousin of Deal's and was convicted of murder in the girl's death in June. She's now the 3rd woman on Arizona's death row. Prosecutors said the couple forced Ame into the small, plastic box as punishment for stealing ice pops. They went to sleep and the girl was found dead the next morning. 3 other relatives are in prison serving sentences for abusing Ame. David Deal, who is listed as the girl's father on her birth certificate, is serving a 14-year sentence after pleading guilty to attempted child abuse. Ame's legal guardian at the time of her death was her aunt, Cynthia Stoltzmann, who is serving a 24-year prison sentence for a child abuse conviction. Ame's grandmother, Judith Deal, is serving 10 years for child abuse.
Ame Deal was born on July 24, 2000, to Shirley Deal, who was married to David Deal at the time she conceived.
According to Shirley, she was seeing another man during the time she conceived, therefore it is not known for sure if David Deal is the father of Ame. However, David Deal is listed as Ame's father on her birth certificate. Shirley and David had two other children together before Ame was born. Shirley and David were living together until Shirley and her children went to stay with her mother in Pennsylvania. Eventually Shirley and the children joined David again and they lived in Texas, together, with David's mother, Judith Deal and his sister, Cynthia Stoltzmann. Shirley claims that while David's family made her a slave to them, called her names and hit her, they did not abuse the children.
Shirley claims also that the family threw her out and she left without her children, relocating.