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29-year-old Nicholas Welch was sentenced to life in prison on Friday for fatally shooting a college student and wounding four others at a house party near Seton Hall University in 2010.
Welch was convicted in March for the murder of 19-year-old Jessica Moore, and wounding four other students. Witnesses testified that Welch had tried to gain entrance to the party. He grew angry when he was denied, and returned to the party with a gun.
Welch apologized to the family of Jessica Moore, a sophomore honors student from Disputanta, Virginia. The New Jersey Herald reports that Welch told Moore’s family, “I just want to let you all know your daughter’s blood is not on my hands.”
Members of the Moore family shared emotional details of Jessica’s life, and lashed out at Welch. The Star Ledger reports that Cynthia Moore, Jessica’s aunt, said, “He showed no mercy for Jessica. I hope he gets what he deserves. I don’t think he deserves to walk the street free again, because no family should ever have to go through what we are going through.”
Superior Court Judge Robert Gardner sentenced Welch to life in prison for the 2010 murder of Jessica Moore. He was sentenced an additional 20 years for the attempted murder of four other partygoers. Welch must serve about 80 years before he is eligible for parole.