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Hope Babel's son: 'There's still times I have nightmares'

By Ryan Hughes, Reporter, RHughes@wfmz.com
Published On: May 14 2013 05:43:00 PM CDT
Updated On: May 15 2013 07:54:55 AM CDT

The brutal killing of Hope Babel has changed the lives of her children forever.

The brutal killing of Hope Babel has changed the lives of her children forever.   

Now, they are getting some closure after 11 long years.

"My mother was my life and a huge part of me died with her, and it was just very dramatic," said Isaiah Babel, Hope's son, who was questioned several times over the years. 

Isaiah has played the heart-wrenching tragedy over and over in his head for more than 11 years. Her death still haunts him.

"There's still times I have nightmares and I won't sleep all night," he said.

Isaiah was 17 years-old when his mother was killed. They lived together inside their Main Street apartment in Shoemakersville, Berks Co.  

His best friend was Ryan Stufflet, who was over all the time.

"Knowing the life we lived you never would have thought that he would have gone and done something like this," said Isaiah.

Stufflet, 28, now stands accused of killing Hope Babel and setting her apartment on fire in September 2002.

Isaiah told investigators that he, his mom and Stufflet "hung out" in the Babel apartment on the night of the homicide, drinking alcohol and smoking marijuana, according to court documents.

At some point, Isaiah Babel and Stufflet left and walked toward a neighbor's house two blocks away, but about halfway there, Stufflet said he had to leave and turned around, police said.

Isaiah lost hope in more ways than one. At one point he never thought the case would be solved, but Tuesday's arrests brought him and his family the closure they have desperately been wanting for years.

"I'm glad that they got him now and this can come to an end. Whether he was my friend or not, he needs to pay for what he did and that's all there is to it," said Isaiah.

According to Isaiah, his mother can now rest peacefully. They have been waiting for it all to end. Now, they're much closer, but Isaiah said the true end will come when Stufflet is convicted.