COLUMBIA, Mo. (KMIZ)
A jury found Joseph Elledge guilty for second-degree murder in the death of his wife Mengqi Ji.
The jury recommended a 28-year prison sentence for Elledge. A judge cannot sentence an offender anything more than what the jury recommends.
Richard Simons of Kc Defense Counsel says, "generally a judge sides with the jury."
So what's next?
Elledge's sentencing date is scheduled for Dec. 17th.
After sentencing, an offender is usually held in the county jail pending transfer to the Missouri Department of Corrections.
Once an offender is in the Missouri of Department of Corrections custody, he or she goes to reception and diagnostic center to determine their specific needs. Including, custody level (minimum, medium or maximum), medical care, mental health and education.
When it comes to custody levels there are factors to be considered.
The crime the offender was convicted guilty of, the length of the sentence and the willingness the offender will have to cooperate with the facility's rules.
Medical and mental health staff will execute tests and screenings to decide the health care and mental health needs the offender will require.
The education staff will look if the offender has graduated high school. If the offender did not graduate high school he or she will be provided an assessment to determine education level and educational needs.
Once all assessments are completed the offender will be transferred to one of the 18 adult institutions in the state of Missouri.
Given that Ellege committed a state crime he will serve his sentence in one of those state prisons.
For Elledge to eligible for parole he will have to serve at least 85% of his sentence.