Local couple guilty in child abuse case sentenced to 20 years
VANCOUVER, WA (KPTV) -
A Vancouver couple convicted of imprisoning and beating their adopted children will spend 20 years behind bars.
Jeffrey and Sandra Weller were sentenced in court Wednesday. She received 20 years, while he was sentenced to 21 years.
"I love my children and would do anything for my children," Sandra Weller said in court. "I wish the truth would come out."
They were convicted by a jury last month. Jeffrey Weller was found guilty on multiple counts of assault, assault of a child and unlawful imprisonment. Sandra Weller is guilty of assault and unlawful imprisonment.
The jury found each of them not guilty on one count of unlawful imprisonment.
"We didn't do what we're charged with," Jeffrey Weller said. "I always loved my children and always will."
Police arrested the couple in the fall of 2011 after their then-16-year-old adopted twins said they were locked in a room with no electricity and beaten when they tried to take food.
Police said the twins were only fed small amounts of food and sometimes it was rotten. The Wellers had six children in all.
On the witness stand during the trial, the Wellers each denied the charges.
As she was led away in handcuffs after the verdict was delivered last month, Sandra Weller said their exes had conned the kids. Jeffrey Weller proclaimed, "We were framed."
Tim Graf originally adopted the twins with Sandra Weller years ago. Last month he said the kids, now 17, were put in a good home and are getting counseling. He did not plan to seek custody.
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