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Reed sentenced for deaths of Oneida couple

Vance Reed Sentenced on July 7, 2017 (WLUK/Mike Moon)

APPLETON, Wis. (WLUK) -- The man convicted in the murders of an Oneida couple was sentenced Monday.

Vance Reed was sentenced to life in prison in the deaths of Harry and Lorraine Brown Bear. He will be eligible for parole after 45 years.

In a quiet voice Monday, Vance Reed apologized for his crimes.

"I know my emotions don't show it, but I want you and everyone in the community and the entire Brown Bear family to know I am truly sorry for what I've done," he said.

Reed plead no contest to the murders.

Harry was 77, Lorraine was 67. Reed stabbed them to death during a night of drinking at their Oneida home last September.

On Monday, the judge questioned Reed about his apology several times.

"How do we know you're truly sorry?" asked Judge Mark McGinnis.

"I'm just sorry, because I killed two people. It hurts. It leaves a hole in my stomach every day," Reed eventually replied.

The judge was not convinced.

McGinnis outlined Reed's past violent record, including stabbing his own mother and showing a fascination with weapons.

"You are a violent, dangerous person that has absolutely no remorse, very low character. You will hurt someone again," said McGinnis.

The judge sentenced Reed to life in prison with the possibility of parole after 45 years. Reed would be 64 years old then.

District Attorney Carrie Schneider said Reed needs to take the time in prison to become a better person.

"What he can do is share his story of what he's done. So if there are other people who come into the prison system who are young or who are angry, he can recognize and see in himself, then he can make some difference," she told FOX 11.

A friend of Lorraine Brown Bear told the court Lorraine and Harry were good people who treated Reed like a son. Diane Stumpf said losing Lorraine broke her heart.

"It's very real. It's hard on me. It's hard on my family. It's hard on my daughter. She had no family, but us," she said.

The prosecutor and defense attorney asked for 30-35 years before parole. The judge decided Vance needed more time and went with 45 years.

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