Brothers sent to prison 26 years later in woman’s death
White Cloud — Two brothers convicted of murder in the slaying of a young woman in 1989 in western Michigan have received long prison sentences.
Matthew Jones, 45, on Tuesday got the mandatory punishment, a life sentence with no parole, for first-degree murder. Paul Jones, 43, convicted of second-degree murder, was sentenced to at least 30 years in prison. His maximum term is 75 years, although he’ll be eligible for parole in his 70s.
The body of 18-year-old Shannon Siders of Newaygo was discovered in Manistee National Forest in 1989, three months after she disappeared. Authorities said she was sexually assaulted and killed while partying with the Jones brothers and other teens in Newaygo County, north of Grand Rapids.
Defense attorneys told jurors there was plenty of reasonable doubt, especially after 26 years.
“For your murder convictions and your sentencing today some balance may result, but nothing in this world will ever replace the hole you created by taking the life of this precious soul or the lives you have injured including your own family,” Siders’ parents, Bob and Mary Siders, said in a prepared statement before the sentences were issued.
“Your behavior … must be met by the most severe punishments allowable by law. However, nothing this court or the department of corrections can do will ever repair or replace what you took from this earth.”
After the sentencing, Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette said the case shows the value of pursuing crimes, even ones committed long ago.
“This conviction and sentencing is proof that no case is too cold for a successful prosecution of someone who robbed a young woman of her life,” Schuette said in a statement.
He said Paul Jones will spend decades behind bars, and “Matthew Jones will never have the chance to harm another young woman.”