HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – A judge sentenced Stephen Marc Stone to life without the possibility of parole Friday morning for the 2013 murders of his wife and 7-year-old son.
Madison County Circuit Court Judge Donna Pate could have overridden the jury’s recommendation and sentenced Stone to death for killing Krista and Zachary Stone, but said she considered the law and arguments presented Friday morning in deciding the sentence.
Stone himself said in court Friday morning that he would prefer to be put to death and that he knew his family was at peace.
His attorneys argued that Stone’s statement that he wanted to die showed he’s still suffering from mental problems.
Defense in making decision about ultimate punishment should like at entirety of Stone’s life, not simply one terrible day. On whole, life appears one worthy of saving, leniency. @whnt
— Brian Lawson (@BrianLawson15) April 5, 2019
Three of the 12 jurors in Stone’s trial voted against the death penalty, favoring life in prison without parole. It requires 10 jurors to recommend a death sentence in Alabama. But since Stone’s case predates a change in state law, Judge Pate could have overridden the jury’s recommendation.