EUGENE, Ore. — A Springfield man was sentenced to life in prison Friday for the murder of his former fiancée.
Earlier in the week, a Lane County jury found Robert Cromwell guilty of first degree murder and unlawful use of a weapon.
Cromwell used a baseball bat to beat 26-year-old Eugene resident Casey Wright to death in November 2013.
Investigators say Cromwell was angry about the end of his relationship with Wright, and killed her after reading text messages she had sent to other men.
Prosecutors say the 33-year-old confessed the killing to a police detective as well as a triage nurse in the emergency room at McKenzie-Willamette Medical Center shortly after the murder.
Cromwell’s murder sentence carries a minimum of 25 years in prison.
Before Cromwell was sentenced, Casey Wright’s family was able to speak about her and the life Cromwell took. Robert Cromwell himself even addressed the court. It was an extremely emotionally day in court as a family looks to heal.
“She is so awesome,” said Casey Wright’s mother, Sydney Brooks. “She had so much potential and this potential has been literally bashed,” added Brooks.
On Friday, Casey’s family got to confront him, telling him he was a coward and that he took a wonderful woman from this earth.
“I still feel present tense, so how loving she is, her influence, probably won’t ever dissipate for many of us,” added Brooks.
“When horrible things happen it brings people together in really good ways, and it makes friends out of family and it makes family out of friends.” added Casey Wright’s father Rossco Wright.
Before Robert Cromwell learned how long he would spend behind bars he was allowed to address the court. Cromwell stood up and started to tell the court that he wanted to address the comment that he wasn’t remorseful and he started to say prosecutors lied to the family, when the judge cut him off.
The judge told him the best way to to show remorse is to say your sorry, not to attack what anybody else has done. The judge went on to say if you want to say your sorry you are welcome to do that.
Cromwell then said, “I would like to say I am sorry,” and then he sat back down.
“That was probably the perfect ending to his trial. For him to reveal himself to everybody that way,” added Brooks.
“We got what the law allows,” said Brooks. “I would prefer absolute life in prison.”
And on a day filled with much sadness for this family, Casey’s mother says it was going to end doing something her daughter loved more than anything.
“We probably go out and ride a horse,” said Brooks.
A ride for the life they lost, the future lives she would have touched and the ones her story may help in the future.
Casey’s family hopes that future help will come in the awareness raised about domestic violence. Rossco Wright says there are resources like Womanspace out there to help woman in troubling relationships. They hope people who hear Casey’s story will seek help.