Friday afternoon, Raymond Clark III was sentenced to 44 years in prison for the murder and sexual assault of Annie Le in September 2009. Ray Clark Jr., the defendant's father, issued a statement prior to the sentence.
Le's dead body was found upside down inside a wall in the basement of a Yale research building, on September 13, 2009, the very day when her wedding was planned. Clark, a lab technician at Yale, was accused of strangling Le, and had pleaded guilty in March to murder and attempted sexual assault. Clark is said to have tried to generate an alibi, attempting to hide evidence at the crime scene.
In the courtroom were family members of Le and of the defendant, many of them seen in tears and anguish.
Clark expressed remorse and apologized to Le's family members near the end of the proceeding.
I stand here today taking full responsibility for my actions, I am truly, truly sorry for taking Annie's life, said Clark as he struggled through the statement with tears.
Annie was and will always be a wonderful person, by far a better person that I will ever be in my life, Clark said.
Ray Clark Jr., the father of Raymond Clark III made a statement in court in New Haven right before his son's 44-year sentence in prison.
In the statement Clark's father said,
First and foremost I would like to extend my family's deepest sympathies to the Le family. The grief and tears we shed are equal for your family as well as ours.
The events of September 2009 devastated two families and shocked a nation. No parent can imagine or prepare for losing one's daughter to violence or to having their son commit such a horrible crime.
I cannot protect him and am powerless to undo this nightmare. But I stand here today with unconditional love for my son. His family loves him and we are proud that he is taking responsibility for his actions and that he shows great remorse for his conduct.
I don't stand here today to try and explain or make excuses for this tragedy. But this is not the Ray we know and raised; we can't explain or make sense of this. I know that we will never understand, as I know that Ray does not understand, how this could have happened. It is with deep sorrow that I stand here today. But I do want to tell my son that his family and his fiancé Jennifer and his friends love him dearly and are proud that he is taking responsibility for his actions.
I know that my son stands here today also with a heavy heart and that he will carry that pain with him for the rest of his life. I know that he is truly sorry for all the pain he has caused the Le family as well as the pain he has caused his own family.
In the end, Ray Clark Jr. stated that the family members of Raymond Clark would not appear on television and news shows, out of respect for the Le family.
When Raymond Clark III comes out of prison, he will be 70 years old.
Le family is considering a civil suit, potentially against Yale for the inadequate security on campus.