A Clark County Judge sentences Jeffrey Weisheit to death after he was convicted of murdering his girlfriend’s two children in April 2010. While Thursday’s sentencing hearing centered around the correct punishment for Weisheit, it also provided the venue to remember the victims, Caleb and Alyssa Lynch.
Jeffrey Weisheit is now heading to death row at Indiana State Prison in Michigan City. Before receiving the death penalty, Weisheit had one last chance to show remorse.
You couldn’t find remorse three years ago and you still can’t find it now. Weisheit even had the opportunity to plead guilty and avoid the death penalty, according to Deputy Prosecutor Gary Schutte.
“In this trial, the court learned more about Weisheit’s life than the shortened lives of Caleb and Alyssa Lynch,” Judge Daniel Moore said in his ruling. “Enough about you Jeff, enough about you.”
“You ended [Caleb and Alyssa’s] dreams. You defied any level of decency. You have a cold and depraved heart.”
Thursday morning began with Weisheit’s defense team’s one last ditch effort to have the death penalty taken out of consideration. Judge Moore overruled their objection and at 10:45 eastern time, a death warrant was issued for Jeffrey Alan Weisheit.
From that moment on, it wasn’t about Weisheit anymore. It was now about Caleb and Alyssa Lynch and the people still trying to cope.
In the back of an unassuming white van, only Jeffrey Weisheit knows what this final drive seems like.
In a wheelchair, only Jeffrey Weisheit knows what this final trip looks like.
But on the witness stand, only Lisa Lynch knows what this final day feels like.
“I don’t know how [Lisa Lynch] could’ve said better what she had to say,” Deputy Prosecutor Gary Schutte said. “No one can relate to what she’s been through. I think she wanted the focus to be on the two children. She did a good job of relaying that and I’m proud of her.”
Caleb and Alyssa Lynch would be proud of their mother too.
Fighting back tears, Lisa Lynch faced Jeffrey Weisheit one last time after Judge Daniel Moore handed Weisheit the death penalty.
Lynch told the court about those bright spring days with her two children’s bright shining faces.
Those were the days before Jeffrey Weisheit took it all away.
Lisa Lynch may have been alone on the witness stand but she wasn’t alone in her grief. Friends, family, investigators, even the jury showed their support in the gallery.
On this day, Lisa Lynch’s heart was touched three years after it was broken.
“It’s the first time in my career I’ve seen that many jurors come to a sentencing hearing,” Schutte said. “I think that speaks volumes on their character and obviously the level of commitment to see it until the end.”
As their son wheeled his way to death row, Weisheit’s loving parents grieved too. Jeffrey’s father is a retired city policeman who now finds his son on the other side of the justice system.
“They’re victims in this too,” Schutte said. “[Jeffrey Weisheit] put them through this. Our heart goes out to [Weisheit’s parents] and it doesn’t end here for them either.”
Wesheit’s attorneys filed a motion to correct after the sentence was handed down. The Vanderburgh County Prosecutor’s Office has 30 days to respond. Once the response comes, Weisheit’s defense will be taken over by the Vanderburgh County Public Defender’s Office and the state’s case will be handed off to the Indiana Attorney General’s Office.
Weisheit told the court he plans to appeal before his June 2014 execution date. It took more than three years leading up to the death penalty. It likely will take even longer for it to be carried out.