Donald Borders was sentenced to life in prison without parole Tuesday after being convicted of the 2003 rape and killing of 79-year-old Margaret Tessneer in Shelby.
The judge denied a request for a new trial.
The sentencing proved to be an emotional day for both families in the courtroom.
Tessneer’s granddaughter, Tina Shell, stood face-to-face with the man convicted of killer her grandmother 10 years ago.
Shell told Borders about the kind of woman she was. She described her as a kind and generous person who loved her family.
"She didn't deserve to be taken away," Shell said.
Shell also told Borders that what he did violated not just her grandmother, but also the family. "We've dealt with so many emotions from sadness to fear to anger -- all because of what you did," Shell told Borders.
Throughout the trial, the defense argued the evidence was contaminated, something Shell addressed in her remarks.
“In my opinion the only thing that’s been contaminated here is been your heart. Because it was corrupted by pure evilness that day,” she told Borders.
Both Borders’ and Tesseneer’s families have said their faith has played a big role in helping them get through this.
Shell told Borders his ultimate judgment will be before God. "I really hope that you that you asked for forgiveness for that and that you are truly sorry for what you've done."
Borders expressed little emotion during Shell's comments. When asked by the judge if he had anything to say, Borders paused, reached for some tissues and said, "No."
Tessneer's body was discovered by her daughter and son-in-law in September of 2003. Borders wasn't arrested until 2009, when investigators used DNA to tie him to the crime.