LEBANON, OH (FOX19) - Ryan Widmer sobbed as a guilty verdict was read in the murder of his wife, Sarah.
Judge Neal Bronson read the guilty verdict Tuesday afternoon. After it was read, Widmer bent over and leaned against the defense table, sobbing with his head in his hands.
When given a chance to make a statement to the judge, Widmer said, "I didn't do this. I don't know why this has gone on for so long....I loved Sarah. I would never hurt her." He also said the case has ruined his life and made him go broke.
As Widmer left the courtroom in handcuffs, his family told him, "We love you, Ryan."
Outside the courtroom, Widmer's father, Gary Widmer, told reporters the verdict was unfair and his son is innocent.
Gary Widmer gave defense attorneys Jay Clark and Lindsey Gutierrez a hug after the verdict. Leaving the courthouse, Clark, visibly upset, said, "What can you say?"
Sarah Widmer's mother chose not to make a statement in court, and left the courtroom without speaking to reporters.
Widmer, 30, has been convicted after his third trial. A conviction in his first trial was overturned due to juror misconduct, a second trial ended in a hung jury.
Widmer faces a mandatory sentence of 15 years to life in prison. He does have 30 days to appeal. His attorneys have already said they will begin the process.
Jurors had been deliberating since Monday around 1 p.m.
The Warren County Prosecutor's Office has released the following statement:
Ryan K. Widmer of Hamilton Township was convicted of murder in the August 11, 2008, death of his 24-year-old wife. A Warren County jury deliberated for approximately 12 hours before reaching its verdict.
Judge Neal Bronson sentenced Widmer to serve 15 years to life in prison.
The Prosecutor's Office is pleased the trial over and that justice has been done for Sarah and her family. The jurors who have served on this case should be commended for their willingness to be a part of this process, and their diligence in reviewing the evidence.
Recognition should also go to the dedicated men and women who have been involved in the case from start to finish. In particular, the diligent efforts of Assistant Prosecutors John Arnold and Travis Vieux are commended. The Hamilton Township Police and Fire Departments, the Sheriff's Office and Coroner, Dr. Russell Uptegrove, among many others, have worked tirelessly to ensure that justice was done.
FOX19 was in the courtroom for the entire trial, bringing you live updates. For an archive of the live blog, click here.
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