NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) – Cara Rintala will go to prison for the rest of her life. Rintala was sentenced Wednesday afternoon at Hampshire Superior Court in Northampton, less than a week after she was found guilty of first-degree murder.
Rintala was convicted in the strangling death of her wife, Annamarie Cochrane Rintala, on Friday. Life imprisonment is the mandatory sentence on first-degree murder convictions in Massachusetts.
Victim impact statements from family members of Annamarie were read in court, two of them were printed statements read out by prosecutors. Annamarie was described as a loving family member, devoted friend, and a passionate paramedic who saved lives.
After four days of deliberations, the jury found Rintala guilty of killing her wife, at their Granby home back in 2010, convicting her a 1st-degree murder. That conviction means they found her guilty of killing her wife with premeditation.
Rintala’s case will be automatically appealed, but that process could take years.
Since she was convicted of first-degree murder, her case wouldn’t go to Appeals Court, it would go to the Supreme Judicial Court for review. The entire appeals process can take years to complete. Rintala’s attorney has not yet mentioned an appeal.
This was the third time Rintala had been tried in connection to her wife’s murder. Her first two murder trials were declared mistrials, after the jury failed to reach unanimous verdicts.
The latest trial was different than the previous trials, because the jury was allowed to consider three charges, first-degree murder, second-degree murder, or voluntary manslaughter, which wasn’t considered in the two previous trials.
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