Chris Jones found guilty of first-degree murder and abuse of a corpse

Friends and family relieved after Jones found guilty

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - After almost nine hours, a jury of four women and eight men found Jones guilty on Saturday.

But there was a sign of relief in a courtroom filled with friends and family of Heather Palumbo-Jones.

"We have been so blessed and we're so thankful for justice," said Heather's cousin, Diane Perry.

Perry, who now cares for Heather and Chris' children, was very emotional after the verdict. She was surrounded by a community that says it can finally move forward.

"We've had a lot of people in the community praying for us and for justice," said Melissa Smith. "And the Germantown police department, the prosecutors, they are wonderful people and there would have never been justice served. It turned out beautifully for us."

In all, the prosecution brought forward 27 witnesses and each person helped build their case. They showed an electronic paper trail of Chris Jones behavior.

Investigators presented graphic and detailed testimony, but it may have been Jones' taped confession with Germantown police that helped the most. It was that taped confession that the jury asked to review during deliberation.

"I think they gave it obviously a lot of time and attention, last night and all day today. And we really appreciate their service," said prosecutor Teresa McCusker.

There is a sentencing set for March 11 for the second charge, but the first degree murder calls for life in prison.

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