By RICHARD F. BELISLE
CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. - After being sentenced Wednesday to five to 10 years in prison for killing his wife, Joseph Leroy Souders waved to his sisters as he was being led from a Franklin County courtroom, but he avoided the gaze of his former sister-in-law, Donna Wetzel.
Before Souders was sentenced, Wetzel was permitted to read a letter to Judge John Walker. In the letter, she said the July 5, 1988, death of her sister, Jane Mitchell Souders, 51, has resulted in an eight-year "nightmare that doesn't go away. Joe has lived a lie for eight years. Now that lie has come to haunt him."
Souders, 56, of 13553 Karper Road, Mercersburg, displayed no emotion when Walker imposed the sentence.
Souders pleaded no contest to voluntary manslaughter in November, according to court records.
A no contest plea means a defendant admits there is enough evidence for a prosecutor to win a conviction.