Edwards' Family Reacts to Murder Sentence: "Not Enough" - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Edwards' Family Reacts to Murder Sentence: "Not Enough"

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James and Shelly Edwards, brother and sister-in-law of Michael Edwards,  asked the judge for a stiffer sentence. James and Shelly Edwards, brother and sister-in-law of Michael Edwards, asked the judge for a stiffer sentence.

KENNEWICK, WA - The family of a man murdered in Benton City says 13 years isn't enough.

That's how much time Noel Gonzales will spend in prison for the murder of Michael Edwards, 55, a disabled man stabbed to death last year.

Edward's brother, niece, and sister-in-law drove from Naches to the Tri-Cities Thursday morning to ask the judge to hand down a stiffer sentence.

"To have his life cut short like that…for this little time is just beyond me," James Edward said.

Benton County Superior Court Judge Robert Swisher accepted the 13-year prison term prosecutors had recommended after Gonzales, 19,  agreed to plead guilty to reduced murder charges.

Swisher agreed with Edwards' family. "There is no excuse for murder."

"No sentence will heal your suffering," Swisher said, "No sentence will bring back the victim."

Gonzales pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and first-degree burglary.

Gonzales apologized to the family for their suffering. The teenager admits burglarizing Edward's home but says he didn't take part in the murder.

Another teenager, Noah Matlack, 18, goes on trial in April for first-degree murder.

A neighbor found Edwards' body last September behind a dumpster in a church parking lot. Detectives say Edwards had been stabbed more than two dozen times. Detectives say an acquaintance of Matlack claimed Edwards owed him $2,500.

Detectives say several items had been stolen from Edwards' home, including rare coins and a gun.Hours after the murder, Oregon State police arrested Matlack and Gonzales at truck stop near the Washington State border.

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