GLYNN COUNTY, Ga. - Wanda-Cooper Jones, the mother of Ahmaud Arbery, stood outside the Glynn County Courthouse on Friday after hearing the men convicted of his murder were sentenced to life in prison.
She was flanked by clergy members and family on the courthouse steps.
"I sat in that courtroom for five weeks straight, but I knew we would come out with a victory," Cooper-Jones said
Cooper-Jones said she prayed to get justice for her son and she feels that prayer was answered.
Father and son Greg and Travis McMichael were sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole while William "Roddie" Bryan was sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole.
Cooper-Jones, was one of several relatives to testify at the sentencing hearing.
"Son, I love you as much today as I did the day you were born," Cooper-Jones said.
She became emotional in the courtroom wearing a pin with her son's picture on it that read, "Forever in our hearts."
"This verdict doesn't bring you back, but it does bring closure to this very difficult chapter of my life," she said.
It was the first time Arbery's relatives formally spoke in court proceedings.
"The man who killed my son has sat in this courtroom every single day next to his father," father Marcus Arbery said. "I'll never get that chance."
"Ahmaud had a future that was taken from him in an instance of violence," Ahmaud Arbery's sister Jasmine Arbery said.
The three men still await a trial for federal hate crimes.