Joshua Komisarjevsky Sentenced to Death: 'It's a Surreal Experience to Be Condemned'

Joshua Komisarjevsky, the second individual involved in the deadly Cheshire, Conn., home invasion, was officially sentenced to death on Friday.

Judge Jon Blue formally sentenced Komisarjevsky for his alleged role in the 2007 murders of Jennifer Hawk-Petti and her daughters, Hayley and Micahela.

May God have mercy on your soul, Blue told Komisarjevsky, according to the Hartford Courant. Blue has set the execution date for July 20, however, under the law, an appeal is automatic and mandatory.

This is a terrible sentence, but it is a sentence you indeed wrote for yourself, Blue said.

Dr. William Petit, the lone survivor of the home invasion, left the courtroom before the sentence was pronounced. Komisarjevsky had claimed the plan went completely awry.

They were never supposed to lose their lives, Komisarjevsky said.

Komisarjevsky and his accomplice, Steven Hayes, who was also sentenced to death, had chosen the Petit's randomly, spotting them at local grocery store. They allegedly sent text messages to each other, saying how excited they were about the crime. The plan was follow the Petit family to their house, take the money and run.

Dr. William Petit testified at the trials of both Hayes and Komisarjevsky. He had given a chilling account about what occurred in the household as a result of the brutal actions of the pair. He testified that he remembers waking tied up in his basement with blood dripping down his head.  Prosecutors say he had been beaten unconscious with a bat while he slept.  He recounted that he heard screams from his family as Hayes and Komisarjevsky tortured and sexual assaulted Petit's wife and daughters.

Don't worry. It's all going to be over in a couple of minutes, said Petit, as reported by the New York Times. Eventually he was able to brake from his binds and escaped the house as it was being set ablaze. He ran to a neighbor's house for seeking help and safety, where the neighbor reportedly found Petit bruised and bloody in the driveway.

At the sentencing on Friday, Komisarjevsky said he did not rape or torture the Petit' or set the house on fire. He spoke to the family members, expressing his grief about the shame he felt and the pain he had caused.

The ripple effect of my actions has had an effect on people I never intended to hurt, he said. It's a surreal experience to be condemned to death.

Defense lawyers for Komisarjevsky tried to present a case of a tortured soul. They claimed he grew up in a broken home where he was sexually molested.

As the prosecutors continued their case, it was revealed that the Hayes and Komisarjevsky had forced Mrs. Petit to withdraw $15,000 from the bank. It was here that she alerted a bank teller that her family was being held hostage at their home. When she returned to the house, she was raped and strangled to death. By this time, the two daughters were already tied up in their bedrooms. In a panic, the duo set the house on fire, trying to flee the scene. The young girls, unable to break free, succumbed to smoke inhalation.

I lost my family and my home, said Petit according to the Associated Press. They were three special people. Your children are your jewels.

In an earlier interview, Councilman Tim Slocum and Honorary Mayor of Cheshire, spoke about the case.

I don't think you can close the chapter on this. Obviously the Petit family will have to deal with this, he said. I don't think time erases some of those memories.

Slocum believes Hayes and Komisarjevsky should not be granted any leniency from the jury. He said the family had such great promise to do great things and Hayes and Komisarjevsky ended those chances.

I just hope our justice system doesn't make a travesty of it to let this man walk away from the gallows, he said. Their actions justify their departure from this Earth.

Although the Dr. Petit had endured several torturous hours on that fateful day, he has to go through the rest of his life without his wife and children. Still, Slocum believes Dr. Petit can persevere through the pain and the loss.

He can rise above it, the hell he endures, said Slocum.

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