MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) - By a vote of 7-5, a jury recommended that Michael Lee be sentenced to life in prison without parole.
After a week-long trial, Lee was found guilty of capital murder in the April 2010 shooting death of Kyser Miree.
After the verdict was read at 4:15 p.m., Defense Attorney Art Powell laid his head on his desk.
Miree's family and friends embraced each other outside of the courtroom.
Prosecutors said Lee shot Miree execution-style during a robbery.
Kyser's mother Kathryn Miree said, "We got the verdict we wanted, and many people have asked us if we were celebrating. We are not. How could we? Another family will lose a son."
Kyser's parents said they respect the jury's recommendation of life without parole.
Kathryn Miree said, "It would not have been our recommendation, but there's a reason they did not put us on the jury. I don't think we can be objective about that. We respect the decision and the recommendation of the jury.
Ben Miree said, "I won't miss or shed a tear, or think about Michael Lee again if I can make myself do that."
The Miree family misses Kyser dearly.
Kathryn Miree said, "I'm sorry you all didn't get to meet him. He was remarkable. He was so smart; he was so funny. He had grace. He had the kind of values and character we were just so proud of."
Michael Lee's family did not comment to reporters after the announcement.
Defense Attorney Art Powell said, "We're obviously very relieved with the jury's verdict. They worked very hard."
Powell said Lee is happy with the decision. He also added that it's been a difficult trial.
He said, "It was very emotional. It's been a drain on everyone on both sides, both families, for everybody involved. It's been a painful and emotional process. There are no winners or losers in this situation for anybody."
This decision is the jury's recommendation. Judge John Lockett will make a final decision on Lee's punishment at a sentencing hearing set for August 9 at 1:30 p.m.
Prosecutor Jill Phillips said she respects the jury's decision, but she will still make the case to the judge for the death penalty.
Phillips said, "This is a recommendation, and the sentencing will be in August. And we will continue to make our arguments at that time."
The Miree family is happy to put this chapter behind them.
Ben Miree said, "I would hope that (Michael Lee) would talk to his redeemer about getting grace."
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