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Clayton, MO (KSDK) - A south St. Louis man was sentenced to 23 years in prison this morning for his guilty plea last month to a second degree murder charge in the death of his girlfriend.

39 year old James Harvey admitted killing 49 year old Sherry Bladdick in July 2010 after the couple argued while at a party in Sunset Hills.

Harvey then took Bladdick's car and was eventually tracked down in the vehicle near Belleville, Illinois.

Police determined Harvey was responsible for the victims death after Sherry Bladdick's estranged husband lobbied police to conduct an autopsy on the woman.

The autopsy showed Bladdick died from a broken neck after being assaulted by Harvey who then left the victim in the yard of a home on Anton Place in Sunset Hills and returned to the party.

Harvey must serve 85% of his prison term before he will be eligible for parole.

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