Patterson sentenced to life in prison - wistv.com - Columbia, South Carolina

Patterson sentenced to life in prison

Ryan Patterson Ryan Patterson
Jamie and Derrick Orman Jamie and Derrick Orman
The families of Jamie, Derrick, and baby Joey released balloons in their honor. The families of Jamie, Derrick, and baby Joey released balloons in their honor.
JACKSON, MO (KFVS) -

JACKSON, MO (KFVS) - The man found guilty of being the trigger man in a triple murder in Cape Girardeau was sentenced to life without parole Monday morning.

Jurors found Ryan Patterson guilty of three counts of 1st degree murder on August 4.

The three sentences shall be served consecutively.

Patterson is the gunman in the 2009 triple murder of Jamie Orman, her unborn baby, and 15-year-old son, Derrick.

Prosecutors say the sentences to be served one right after another send the message that Patterson will likely never walk the streets again.

In court, victims' family members got a chance read some remarks.

"This is the last picture I will ever have of my son," said Bruce Orman, Derrick's father. "Dead in his casket. It's appalling to me the system failed to put him to death and has failed to give us the gratification to watch him die."

"Patterson played the judge, juror, and executor when he took the lives of Jamie, Derrick, and Joey away from us," said Kelly Yates-Hoffman, Jamie Orman's sister.

Prosecutors have called the case a murder plot gone wrong. They say Michelle Lawrence, who pleaded guilty to murder charges in June, plotted along with Patterson to kill her estranged husband John for insurance money. However, John wasn't home that Tuesday morning in October and the three others died instead. Samuel 'Ray Ray' Hughes also faces charges in connection with the murders. Hughes is accused of serving as the look out.

Earlier this month Hughes was sentenced to 20 years in prison.  Lawrence received 15 years.

"All three should have gotten the death sentence," said John Lawrence. "None of them deserve to live for what they've done to all of us."

Outside the court, emotions ran high as a disturbance erupted between families and police.

"None of our families want this," said Terry Bettis, Jamie Orman's mother. "But this is the result. We're not the guilty ones. Don't threaten us. Our family has lost enough."

Meanwhile, Patterson's family say they feel he's wrongfully taking the fall in this crime.

"I'm going to make you a promise," said Patterson's sister, LuBertha Ellis. "My brother will walk this Earth again because he didn't do this."

"They got the wrong one," said his mother, Joesphine Patterson.

The Orman family left the property to have a peaceful balloon release. Monday marked 22 months and 22 days since the three lost their lives.

"So we're releasing 22 purple balloons for Jamie, 22 green balloons for Derrick, and 22 blue balloons for Joey. We're also releasing three white ones for their innocence. Purple was Jamie's favorite color. The green is for Big Green Tractor. That was Derrick's favorite song."

No matter happens now, the family says no sentence is enough.

"Nothing's ever going to bring my daughter and my babies back," said Bettis.

Copyright 2011 KFVS. All rights reserved.

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