A Minnesota man accused of fatally shooting his wife and staging her death to look like a suicide has been found guilty of premeditated murder.
A jury in Washington County convicted Stephen Allwine Wednesday night. Allwine will be sentenced Friday. The conviction carries a mandatory life prison term.
Amy Allwine, 43, was found shot in the head in the bedroom of her Cottage Grove home in November 2016.
Prosecutors said Allwine drugged his wife before shooting her in a hallway and moving her body to the bedroom where he tried to make her death look like a suicide by posing it. Prosecutors argued there were no blood spatters on the bedspread or nightstand next to her body and the gun was resting on her left elbow even though she was right handed.
"Physical and scientific evidence don't lie," said prosecutor Fred Fink.
The prosecution argued that Stephen Allwine was having an affair. They alleged that since he was a member of the United Church of God, which discourages divorce, he attempted to hire a man on the dark web to kill his wife. Stephen Allwine spent thousands of dollars of bitcoin to arrange his wife's death, but the killer bilked him of the money, Fink said.
Defense attorney Kevin DeVore argued that the prosecution didn't have fingerprints, eyewitnesses, DNA evidence or a confession to link Stephen Allwine to the crime.
Amy Allwine's parents and siblings released a statement following the verdict.
"We can summon no words to describe life without Amy," the statement read. "We loved her and miss her tremendously. We now turn to the path ahead of privately healing and grieving."