This photo shows a view of the defendant's table in a courtroom closed due to budget cuts and layoffs, at the Stanley Mosk Courthouse in Los Angeles on March 16, 2009. Robyn Beck/AFP/Getty Images

A Michigan man was sentenced to life in prison Monday, for killing a 16-year-old high school sophomore who had accused him of raping her.

Quinn James, 43, of Wyoming, was handed the sentence of life in prison without the possibility of parole for the strangulation death of Mujey Dumbuya. James, who was a maintenance worker at East Kentwood High School, where Dumbuya studied, was convicted of first-degree premeditated murder in February.

He was already serving 20-30 years in prison after being convicted in December of raping Dumbuya in 2017, when she was 15 years old.

According to the authorities, James was under the impression that preventing the teenager from testifying in his trial would have benefited his case. That was why he kidnapped her Jan. 24, 2018, while she was on her way to the bus stop to get a ride to school. The victim’s partially naked body was found in the woods in Kalamazoo, about 50 miles southeast of her Grand Rapids-area home, four days after she was reported missing.

The victim was dating James’ fiancée's nephew at the time she was raped. The unidentified nephew was living with James and his fiancée in Wyoming. On April 8, James' fiancée, 27-year-old Tiara Burnett, pleaded guilty to obstruction of justice for lying to investigators. Assistant Kent County Prosecutor Dan Helmer said at the time that prosecution would recommend that Burnett serve no jail time if she successfully completed five years of probation, MLive reported.

Dumbuya’s family members were present in the court Monday, and got a chance to speak before James was sentenced. Her aunt showed two photos of her niece to everyone who was present, NBC-affiliated Wood TV reported. One of the pictures showed the girl as a smiling student, while the other showed her body in a casket, wearing the dress she had planned to wear to prom. "He laid like a serpent, waiting for his prey," Dumbuya's aunt said. "He has no idea what he has done to this family. And, he's not going to hurt another girl. No other family should go through this because of him."

Dumbuya’s mother addressed James directly in her speech. “You destroyed her life, and then you took her away from me forever. How coward you are, how heartless you are. It is hard for me to forgive him, people like this don’t deserve to be a part of a community," she said, Fox 17 reported.

James stood motionless as he watched the victim’s family members speak. When it came time for him to speak, he maintained his innocence. "It wasn't me," he said. "I didn't do that. It hurts because I didn’t take their grandchild, their niece. I’m the face that they hate, and I’m not the right face.”

In conclusion, Kent County Judge George J. Quist said: “This is a horrific crime committed against a very vulnerable young girl. I know that Mr. James denies that he committed it, but having sat through this trial I believe that the evidence is circumstantial but it is overwhelming that he did commit the crime."