The tragedy of losing Victoria Stafford , who was abducted, raped and killed by Michael Rafferty went to trial today May 15,2012 . He maintained his innocence as the judge labelled him "a monster" .
Rafferty had apologized to the eight-year-old girl's family after hearing the effects of her death three years ago. Even after aplogizing to her family he still denied the crimes he was convicted of Friday.
“I am guilty of many crimes and there are a lot of things I am very, very ashamed of, but these three counts I still stand firmly behind not guilty,” he said.
It was the first time Rafferty had openly spoken in his own defence. The 31-year-old did not take the stand during the 10 day trial, leaving only his former girlfriend and accomplice Terri-Lynne McClintic's account of what happend the day Victoria Stafford died.
Rafferty was senteced to life in prison with no chance of parole for 25 years. He was also charged 10 years for sexual assault and kidnapping.
“Only a monster could commit such an act of pure evil,” Judge Heeney said angrily. “You, sir, are a monster.
Victoria's big brother said "it feels like the whole world is playing a sick trick on him " - but it's not. He also described that his heart has been "ripped out"
Tori vanished April 8, 2009, and her family spent six agonizing weeks wondering what could have happened to their bubbly little girl, until Rafferty and McClintic were charged and police announced they believed Tori was dead.