DETROIT - Before he was sentenced Wednesday, the 55-year-old man convicted of killing a 19-year-old woman last year on the porch of his suburban Detroit home apologized to the victim's family, reports CBS Detroit.
Theodore Wafer, who was convicted of second-degree murder on Aug. 2, will serve 15-to-30 years in prison for killing Renisha McBride, plus another two years on a felony firearm charge, according to the station. The sentencing means that the Dearborn Heights resident will be behind bars no fewer than 17 years. His attorney had asked for six years.
Wafer apologized to McBride's family prior to sentencing. "I hope you forgive me," he said. "I only wish I could take this horrible tragedy back."
The station reports Wayne County Judge Dana Hathaway told Wafer that she believes he is "not a cold-blooded killer" and that he acted out of panic and fear, but said she could not go below sentencing guidelines.
"One life gone, one life ruined," Hathaway said. "You made choices that brought us here today."
Members of the victim's family also spoke in court Wednesday, according to CBS Detroit.
"My life was devastated," said 23-year-old Jasmine McBride, Renisha's sister. "[Wafer] needs the maximum [sentence]... he needs to think about what he's done."
Wafer never denied shooting McBride when she showed up on his porch before dawn on Nov. 2, the station reports. He testified that he fatally shot the victim in the head in self-defense after she pounded on his door and allegedly tried to break into his home. McBride had an extremely high blood-alcohol level at the time, and had walked away from a car crash in Detroit three hours earlier.
Prosecutors said Wafer should have called 911.