MUNCIE, Ind. – A man found guilty of killing his 5-month-old son and setting his house on fire to cover it up has been sentenced to 72 years in prison.
A judge handed down the sentencing Friday for Cory Wallace, who was charged with neglect of a dependent resulting in death, arson, battery and obstruction of justice. A jury found him guilty last month.
Wallace spoke exclusively with CBS4 after his sentencing came down stating he was "sorry for what happened." He also said he loved his son.
Wallace’s infant son Jensen was found dead in a home in the 2400 block of Meeker Avenue in February 2015. Wallace allegedly told authorities that he couldn’t save his son because of the flames.
4 Fast Facts
- Cory Wallace sentenced to 72 years in prison
- A jury convicted him of killing his son and setting a house fire to cover it up
- Family members asked the judge not to give Wallace the maximum sentence
- Prosecutors said Wallace didn't take responsibility for his actions and called him "selfish and narcissistic"
Investigators treated the incident as a suspicious death investigation. Six months later, Muncie police detectives determined the cause of death for the baby was blunt force trauma to the head.
Police interviewed Wallace again in August 2015. He said he “accidentally” dropped his baby on February 10, 2015, on the hardwood floor.
During the sentencing hearing Friday morning, Wallace's mother maintained her son's innocence and said she didn't believe he was guilty of all the charges he was convicted of. His sister also said he shouldn't spent the maximum amount of time in prison. Wallace didn't make a statement on his behalf during the hearing.
Delaware County Circuit Court 1 Judge, Marianne Vorhees said seeing pictures of the baby's lifeless body covered with bruises was like "watching a horror movie."
Chief Trial Deputy Eric Hoffman had asked for 76 1/2 years, the maximum sentence. In court Friday, he said Wallace "failed to act like a human being" and noted he had a prior conviction for neglect of another child. He said Wallace refused to accept responsibility for his actions and referred to him as "selfish" and "narcissistic."
"He’s a disgusting individual," Hoffman said about Wallace. He added, "you have somebody who’s been convicted of neglecting 2 infants in the exact same manner with broken ribs, torn tissue in the mouth, one of whom died from shaken baby. It’s disgusting."
The prosecutor discussed Jensen's injuries, which included cuts, scrapes, abrasions and more than 26 marks on his back.
"Most people treat animals better than the defendant treated his son," he said, adding that Wallace deserved "no mercy whatsoever."