CANTON, Ohio – The mother of the pregnant Ohio woman killed by former police officer Bobby Cutts Jr. told him minutes after a jury spared him the death penalty that she had already forgiven him and she hoped he would one day get out of jail.
"I do forgive you," Jessie Davis' mom Patty Porter told Cutts as he sat in the courtroom, adding that it was her faith in God that helped her do so. "I hope you can hold your son, and I hope I can raise him to forgive you."
"He knows what you did. You would not believe the stories he's told us."
Porter's heart-wrenching victim's statement came only minutes after a jury on Wednesday recommended that the former Canton police officer be sentenced to life in prison with a chance of parole for killing 26-year-old Davis and their unborn baby.
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Cutts, 30, would be eligible for parole after 57 years under the jurors' recommendation for an aggravated murder charge in the death of the fetus. Stark County Common Pleas Judge Charles Brown Jr. was hearing statements from each side and planned to issue his sentence afterward.
Cutts had sobbed on the witness stand when he claimed the death of Davis from an elbow to the throat last June was an accident during an argument. He said he dumped her body in a park in a panic. He returned to the witness stand after his conviction to ask jurors to spare his life.
Prosecutors told the jury that Cutts killed Davis and the nearly full-term unborn baby at her Lake Township home in northeast Ohio to avoid making child support payments for the child.
The couple's son, Blake, then 2 1/2, was found home alone and gave investigators their first clues to his mother's disappearance when he said, "Mommy's crying. Mommy broke the table. Mommy's in the rug," and later, "Daddy's mad."
For more than a week, Cutts denied knowledge of her whereabouts as thousands searched in the area amid blanket national cable TV coverage. He finally led authorities to the body, wrapped in a comforter.
"I want you to look at me. I've had this conversation in my head with you a million times," Porter told Cutts after the courtroom heard the sentence, as the still-grieving mother wept quietly. "I never wanted in my heart to believe you had hurt her, but in my soul I knew you had."
Davis' mother then turned to the judge and asked that the man who killed her daughter and their unborn baby girl walk free one day.
"Please show mercy on him so he can raise his son," she pleaded.
Jessie's sister Whitney Davis wasn't so forgiving.
"I thought that at some point I might be able to forgive you," she told Cutts through loud sobs, looking him straight in the eye. "But when I listen to Blake cry, I hate you."
She remembered aloud the day she called her sister's boyfriend to ask him if he knew where Jessie was, and he said he didn't. She accused Cutts of using and manipulating her sister.
"I don't believe you're sorry for what you did," she added. "You're sorry you got caught up in your lies. ... It disgusts me that you sit there and you don't care. If you cared, you would have told the truth. You would not have left my sister's body and my niece's body sit there in that field and rot."
Cutts nodded his head slightly, clenched his teeth and also maintained eye contact during the emotional and angry statement from Whitney Davis.
"You got rid of someone who was an inconvenience for you," the mourning sister said. "It disgusts me that you're here and she's gone."
Cutts and his family declined the opportunity to make a statement to the judge.
In statements before the judge was to issue a sentence, Cutts' attorney Fernando Mack asked Brown to weigh that Cutts has accepted responsibility for his actions, had no prior history of violence and once saved the life of a fellow officer.
"Those are all factors that this court should consider," said Mack, adding, "He still has a family."
Outside the courthouse, Davis' father, Ned Davis, was asked about his ex-wife's offer of forgiveness and said he hadn't forgiven Cutts.
"He violently murdered my daughter and granddaughter. What would you do?" he said. "Mr. and Mrs. Cutts did not raise him to do this, of that I'm sure. Everybody lost today."
For the aggravated murder charge in the death of the unborn baby, the judge accepted the jury's recommendation of life in prison with parole eligibility after 30 years.
The additional years without parole that were tacked on to Cutts' sentence were for charges of murder in Davis' death, abuse of a corpse, burglary and child endangering for leaving Blake Davis alone.
For the aggravated murder charge in the death of the unborn baby, the jury chose among these possible sentence recommendations: the death penalty, life in prison without parole or life with parole eligibility after 20, 25 or 30 years.
Jurors found him not guilty of aggravated murder in the death of Davis but convicted him of a lesser charge of murder in her death.
Cutts, who also was convicted of abuse of a corpse, burglary and child endangering for leaving Blake Davis alone, resigned as a patrolman from the Canton police department.
Cutts' attorneys asked that the sentences be merged.
Defense attorneys said after the conviction that they felt acquitting Cutts of aggravated murder in Davis' death but finding him guilty of aggravated murder in the baby's death was inconsistent.
The issue might be part of an appeal, the defense has said.
"Bobby Cutts, you took my sister away from me," said a weeping Stephanie Porter, the cousin of Jessie's adopted brother Caylon Davis, as she read a letter from him aloud.
"You took a chunk out of my heart ... You said it was an accident. I do not believe that ... How can you live with yourself?"
FOX News' Catherine Donaldson-Evans and The Associated Press contributed to this report.