Philips gave no reaction as the sentence was heard and quietly shuffled from the courtroom without looking at the audience, which contained Patty Phillips' family as well as Det. Jeff Crumbley, who has stayed involved in the case for the entire four years it has taken to come to trial.
Preceding the recommendation the jury got to hear from each attorney. Defense counsel Harolyn Howard asked for leniency for Phillips while Assistant Common-wealth's Attorney Wayne Taylor asked for the life sentence.
"How much leniency do you think he showed Patty as he held her down?" Taylor asked jurors.
Friday morning saw Patty's family stop by the Common-wealth's Attorney's Office before making the drive back to Ohio.
"We are so thankful to the people at this office," said Patty Phillips' mother, Donna Newton. "They have been so kind to us. The people in this area were so nice and supportive to us."
Patty's brother Bill echoed those sentiments saying, "They got justice for Patty."
"You know how it is when you have to go far from home," Bill Newton said. "You assume that they will back Marcus because he's home, but there was none of that. They did right by Patty."
The family also had praise for Det. Crumbley, who stayed with the case for four years and often worked on it during his own time when the the case was in flux.
"He had no quit," Bill Newton said. "He was like a dog with a bone."
Taylor was very pleased with the outcome. He said he had heard from many circles that the case was unwinnable, but he said noted that he had a lot of help.
"It's a rare occasion when you have law enforcement and witnesses from four different states come together and work for the same result," Taylor said.
Taylor also said he was inspired by Crumbley's dedication and noted, "He would still be here if the case hadn't finished and he will be back when the formal sentencing is done on October first."