OWENSBORO, Ky. (WEHT) – Matthew Adams has been sentenced to life in prison after pleading guilty to the murder of Erica Owen.

In a court hearing Tuesday, it was announced an agreement had been made through mediation.

In Judge Jay Wethington’s court Adams pleaded guilty to charges:

  • Murder, Capital Offense
  • Burglary, First Degree
  • Violation of Kentucky Emergency Protective Order / Domestic Violence Order
  • Theft By Unlawful Taking
  • Tampering With Evidence (2 Counts)

The recommended sentence on the murder charge is life in prison without possibility of probation or parole. Adams other recommended sentence on all other charges are as follows:

  • Burglary, 20 years
  • Violation of Kentucky EPO/DVO, 12 months
  • Theft By Unlawful Taking, 10 years
  • Tampering With Physical Evidence, 5 years
  • All sentences run concurrently

Matthew Adams’ attorney request for mediation was accepted in August. The prosecution and Adams’ attorney met with appointed retired Judge Philip Patton.

Adams was charged with the 2018 murder of Erica Owen.

Owen was 25 years old and, a nurse at Owensboro Health Regional Hospital. The coroner says Owen died from strangulation. She was found dead at a home on Placid Place.

“It was very emotional. It wasn’t easy,” said Lisa Greer, Owen’s mother, describing what mediation was like.

More than three years after Erica Owen’s death, and after several hours of mediation, her ex-boyfriend Adams pleaded guilty, and will likely be sentenced to life without the possibility of parole.

“It’s all sad, it’s a tragedy,” said Greer. “But we felt like we got the best thing we could do in the situation.”

Daviess County Commonwealth Attorney Bruce Kuegel says it was a proper agreement.

“He’s going to spend the rest of his life in prison,” he said. “That’s not the death penalty, but he is going to be, he is going to stay there for the rest of his life, and that, to me, speak volumes.”

“From yesterday, we felt like we did get justice for her. He will be in prison for the rest of her life. No possibility for parole. As tragic as that it, I feel like it’s deserved. I felt like it was just,” Greer adds.

While the plea agreement brings an end to the legal process for the Owen family, they continue to search for ways to keep her legacy alive once the sentencing is formally done in a few months.

Since her death, more than a dozen benches dedicated to her were donated, and seven Erica Owen Nursing Scholarships were awarded at OCTC.

“She’s probably glad for the rest of us that we can close that chapter and focus on the most important thing and that’s her, and focusing on her memory,” Greer says.

Sentencing is scheduled for December 13.

Friends and family honor Erica Owen