Austin Jones Sentenced to Life in Prison without Parole
GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- A man's fate was determined today. The penalty phase of the Austin Jones murder trial ended today.
The jury came back with its sentencing recommendation. They could choose life in pirson, or death. Then the judge had his say.
It was an emotional week for Jones' family-- and for the family of the man he killed.
"Mr. Jones, the jury having found you guilty of first-degree murder and having recommended to the court a sentence of life without parole, this court finds you guilty and sentences you to a life in prison without parole," said Circut Judge Mark Moseley.
After a morning of listening to closing arguments, the jury for the penalty phase of the Austin Jones murder trial finally made a recommendation…
The question in everyones mind… should Jones be sentenced to a life in prison without parole, or should he be given the death penalty?
"This was clearly a brutal, senseless, needless crime," said Moseley.
And Judge Mark Moseley agreed with the jury's recommendation.
"It is the intent of this court and that regard based on your crime that you should never leave prison," said the Judge.
Jones is convicted of first-degree murder in the beating death of Korean War Veteran, Paul Quandt.
Paul Quandt Jr. says he felt relief to finally have all this behind him.
"It's nice to have and end point. We've suffered a loss but it's good to have the court process finally behind us," said Quandt Jr.
Jones mother, says she hopes to move forward.
"What do I hope happens next? That everybody finds peace… in their hearts," said Sherry Richards.
After sentencing Austin Jones stood up and apologized to the Quandt family.
"Mr. Quandt, I'm sorry. I'm really sorry Mr. quandt," said Jones to the family.
Judge Moseley finished his sentencing by saying the jury had shown mercy on Jones… and that he hopes Jones finds some way of doing good while serving time in prison.
Both families told us they believe the trial and sentencing were handled fairly.
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