A man convicted of first-degree murder for a crime he committed - KTIV News 4 Sioux City IA: News, Weather and Sports

A man convicted of first-degree murder for a crime he committed in 1997 was back in Clay Co. Iowa Court

SPENCER, Iowa (KTIV) - A northwest Iowa man convicted of first-degree murder for a drug-related slaying of a teenager 17-years-ago was back in court Monday morning in Spencer to try and get his sentence reduced.

Ryan Wedebrand was convicted of kidnapping and killing Gregory "Sky" Erickson with a large group of friends in 1997. But Wedebrand was a minor when he was convicted and a U.S. Supreme Court Ruling has made it so anyone convicted as a juvenile can request re-sentencing.

At Monday morning's re-sentencing hearing, both of Erickson's parents read prepared statements.

They say that Wedebrand's actions changed their lives forever, and the pain of losing their child has never subsided.

They want a life sentence without parole.

Wedebrand also testified, saying that his time in prison has led him to the Catholic faith, and he'd like a chance to use his life for helping others to do the same.

The judge says he will consider all of the testimony and make a ruling on May 16.KTIV's Kayah Gausman covered Monday's proceeding in Clay County Court and will have more Monday night on News Four.

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