ALBANY, N.Y. -- Edward Mero, the man convicted of murdering two women, was sentenced Tuesday morning in Albany County Court.
Mero will spend 50 years to life in prison for murdering Megan Cunningham five years ago and murdering Shelby Countermine three years ago.
Before the judge told him his fate, Mero addressed the court. He said he apologized to the families for the loss of their daughters but maintained he didn’t murder them.
Three victim impact statements were read. One was from Megan Cunningham’s mother, who now lives out of state. A member of the DA’s office read it and she described the love she has for her daughter and detailed how much pain she now lives with.
"I miss her so much that there are days when I can’t remember why it’s worth the effort to keep living," she wrote.
Cunningham was killed in 2013. Her body was found in the home she shared with Mero following a fire.
Shelby Countermine was killed in 2014. Her body wasn't found until May of 2015 in a shallow grave on property owned by the Albany Water Department. Mero was an employee there at the time.
Countermine's mother and stepmother both spoke about Shelby’s love of life and how much they miss her.
"I will always remember my daughter as a beautiful light. I will remember the promise within her and all the dreams that we had for her," said Countermine's mom. "No parent should have their child taken away in such a senseless manner by a monster with apparently no remorse."
District Attorney David Soares says he’s pleased the judge gave Mero the maximum sentence but says it’s a bittersweet day.
“You’re always left with the kind of impression that you’re left with today because we still have a family that has to turn the page from this moment and try to move forward with their lives and put the pieces back together,” Soares said.
Mero’s attorney, Cheryl Coleman, says she still believes there are issues with the case. She says a new team of attorneys will be filing an appeal.