Man sent to prison for murder of former Cedar Rapids woman

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March 30, 2014 | 1:05 pm

Pantaleone Salvatore Salinas, the man who murdered her mother, was “abusive, demeaning, jealous, possessive,” Carol Becker told a Missouri judge on Wednesday.

Salinas, 71, formerly of Cedar Rapids, was sentenced Wednesday to 25 years in prison for the August 2006 murder of Renee Zeman, 65, at Zeman’s home near Rolla.

Both had worked at Rockwell Collins in Cedar Rapids before Zeman retired and moved to her “dream home” near Rolla. Zeman, who was active in Cedar Rapids civic and labor organizations, had ended a long-term relationship with Salinas shortly before he killed her with a stab wound to the neck.

Becker, Zeman’s daughter who now lives in Colorado, fought back tears as she delivered a victim impact statement in Phelps County Circuit Court in Rolla.

Salinas’ “controlling outbursts,” she said, were fueled by his alcoholism.

Her mother had told her, she said, it was as if Salinas “... had a hole in his bucket — that no matter how much love, compassion, understanding and patience she poured into his bucket, it would never be enough to fill it.”

Her mother, she said, “was liked and loved by so many people. My mom represented for me life, love, beauty, kindness, goodness, generosity, adventure, and she was my source of inspiration. She loved life more than anyone I’ve ever known.

“What he did to my best friend, my mother, was so horrible, so unnatural and premeditated, there is no way to possibly be prepared for it, even when you see it coming for years.

“He is nothing but a predator and a parasite, a user, a liar and a taker. ... My wish for him is that he experience nothing but suffering for the rest of his pathetic existence on this earth before his inevitable descent into hell. I want him to feel a thousand-fold the terror my mom must have felt as he was shoving that knife through her neck.”

Salinas, in a written statement, said he was “deeply sorry and repentant for allowing myself to hurt everyone involved.”

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