LIVINGSTON, TX (KTRE) - A Polk County jury has handed down a life sentence for a man found guilty of first-degree murder in connection to the brutal beating death of his log cabin roommate in July of 2015.
The jury found Christopher Williams, 39, found guilty of first-degree murder Wednesday afternoon.
The killing happened at the Lakewood Cabins, located off FM 3277 in the Scenic Loop area of Polk County. Authorities say Williams killed his roommate, Andrea Piwko, 25, then called 911 and left the scene before first responders arrived.
On Friday morning, a Polk county deputy took the stand to discuss Williams' behavior during his transport back to jail last night.
The deputy said when they arrived to the jail, Williams became violent and belligerent. Williams used profanity and drop-kicked the door in a cell, the deputy said.
Judy Long took the stand next. She is the woman who told Williams that Piwko had left with another man. Long was the landlord at the cabin where Piwko was murdered.
She said she drank beers with him that night and reluctantly admitted to talking about Piwko with him.
Long said Williams asked her to take him to the club to try to find Piwko.
"You were egging him on weren't you? You were telling him how bad she was for you," said Kari Allen, a prosecutor with the Polk County District Attorney's Office.
Long said she was not.
She admitted to going to check on Williams after he returned home because she cared about him. She also went to visit him after he was arrested.
"I don't think he needs to go to prison at all," Long said.
After the jury sentenced Williams to life in prison, a number of Piwko's family members appeared in court to give their impact statements and explain to Williams how their relative's death had affected them.
"When you lose a loved one, you just have to learn to put one foot in front of the other," Allen said.
Piwko's brother-in-law said that Williams "erased" any chance Piwko might have had of recovery.
"We were robbed of the chance to see her face and have closure," Piwko's brother-in-law said. "It's not my wish that Chris will burn in hell."
Piwko's sister said that she has dreams where Andrea is still alive.
"We won't get to hear her sing her favorite songs with her beautiful voice," Piwko's sister said.
Piwko was loved by many, her mother said.
"All she wanted was to be normal," Piwko's mother said.
"A jury of 12 listened to the evidence, found him guilty of murder, and sentenced him to life. I think the citizens have spoken," Allen said.