XENIA — A Xenia man who pleaded guilty Feb. 28 to the murders of his sister and mother will spend 20 years to life in prison.
Winston Sheppard, 56, was indicted in December 2018, Greene County Common Pleas Court records show. According to Xenia Police Division, Sheppard stabbed Ralphael Sheppard, 55, and Estella Sheppard, 84, Dec. 5, 2018 during a verbal argument that escalated. Ralphael was pronounced dead at the scene and Estella died from injuries at Greene Memorial Hospital, the release said. Ralphael was a Central State University graduate and worked at Huntington Bank. Estella taught in the Dayton Public school system.
Judge Stephen A. Wolaver handed down the sentence to Sheppard, who had just accepted a plea agreement, changing his plea to guilty and choosing not to go to trial.
Sheppard was sentenced to 15 years to life for each of the two counts of murder, which will be served concurrently, and five years for each of the two counts of felonious assault, which will also be served concurrently. The two sentences will be served consecutively to each other for a total of 20 years to life, of which 15 years is mandatory.
Sheppard is entitled to 451 days jail credit, will be eligible for parole after the 20 years, and must register with Ohio’s violent offender database.
“I’m deeply sorry for my actions and for bringing friends, family and the community through this ordeal,” Sheppard said in court. “I hope my mom and sister are in heaven and I hope they forgive me.”
Wolaver responded: “I hope that you have come to a resolution in your mind as to how this happened because I cannot figure it out on my own … It’s obviously, clearly a family tragedy.”
Sheppard’s $1 million bond was ordered released. Assistant Prosecutor Cheri Stout handled the case for the state while Defense Attorney Adam Arnold represented the defendant.
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