Triggerman Sentenced In Windsor Locks Triple Homicide

As she began to speak in a Hartford courtroom Wednesday afternoon, Anne Rossi stared angrily at Jose Guzman, the man who murdered her husband, Barry, and two others at a Windsor Locks body shop in 2003.

"This man took a gun, laid down three very beautiful human beings and very cruelly, very coldly pumped seven bullets into them without hesitation, without remorse," Rossi read from a prepared statement.

At Guzman's sentencing, Rossi said that Guzman deserved death for what he did, but because of a plea deal with prosecutors, Guzman was sentenced to life in prison, without the possibility of release.

"He will die in a prison cell as he should," Anne Rossi said. "This is more than he deserves."

Jose Guzman was a hired hitman, who admitted gunning down Barry Rossi, Lorne Stevens and Robert Stears in July 2003 for money.

"He stripped their families of their happiness and their love for a lousy two or three grand," said Linda Binnenkade, Barry Rossi's sister-in-law, who also spoke at the sentencing.

Guzman testified against the man who hired him, Benedetto Cipriani. Cipriani was sentenced to 200 years in prison in April for orchestrating the murders. He wanted Robert Stears dead because Cipriani was having an affair with Stear's wife.

Barry Rossi was Stear's business partner at B&B Automotive and Lorne Stevens was a mechanic. Guzman testified he shot them too, because he didn't want to leave any witnesses.

"It was despicable and cowardly," said Judge Julia Dewey before issuing the sentence. "They were unarmed, innocent men."

Guzman kept his head down throughout the proceedings. At one point, his attorney, Sara Bernstein, spoke on his behalf.

"He asked us to express to the court and to the families that he is sorry, as inadequate as that word is," Bernstein said.

An accomplice in the murders, Erik Martinez, was also sentenced Wednesday.

He will spend 25 years in prison for buying the gun used in the murders.

Martinez read a statement before the court, saying, "I deeply regret the heartache and sorrow that my actions brought upon the surviving families and my family also."

With these sentencings, the legal proceedings end, but for the victim's families, the grief and anger does not.

"The pain will never go away for any of us. Our lives have been touched forever by the evil inflicted on us by Jose Guzman," said Linda Binnenkade.

"Jose Guzman is an animal," Anne Rossi said. "He is a cold-hearted killer. He is a waste of life."

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