Justice Served

Missouri man gets life in prison for brutal murder of transgender woman Ally Steinfeld

Andrew Vrba mugshot

21-year-old Andrew Vrba, a man convicted of murdering a Missouri transgender woman in 2017, will spend the rest of his life behind bars. A judge sentenced him to life in prison without parole.

KY3 reports that Vrba, who was convicted of first-degree murder, armed criminal action and abandonment of a corpse this past August, will also serve a concurrent 20-year sentence for the armed criminal action conviction.

Vrba is one of four suspects now serving a prison sentence for the murder of 17-year-old Ally Steinfeld in September 17. The three others connected to the killing already pled guilty and have begun serving their terms.

Related: Transgender woman found brutally murdered in Missouri. Are police mishandling the case?

Steinfeld went missing for four weeks before the discovery of her remains in Cabool, a rural area about 70 miles east of Springfield, Missouri. Forensics reports revealed that her attackers gouged out her eyes before stabbing her multiple times, including in the genitals.

Vrba confessed to the crime during an interrogation by investigators, though his story changed several times. Testimony by Vrba revealed that he had discussed killing Steinfeld prior to the murder, and that he had discussed poisoning her with his girlfriend, Briana Calderas. He also texted his girlfriend after the murder, letting her know that it was done. Investigators later found Steinfeld’s remains near Calderas’ home. Calderas later confessed to her role in the crime, as did her friends James T. Grigsby and Isis Schauer.

Police and Steinfeld’s family are still at a loss to explain Vrba’s motive in killing the teenage girl. Despite evidence that she was targeted due to her gender identity, law enforcement refused to investigate the murder as a hate crime.