An Indian-origin man, convicted of going on a shooting spree and killing two persons, including his estranged wife, in a Clifton church in New Jersey, the U.S., has been awarded a double- life sentence without parole by a judge.

Joseph Pallipurath, 29, drove from California to New Jersey in 2008 and killed two persons at the St. Thomas Syrian Orthodox Knanaya church there.

The victims were his estranged wife, Reshma James, 24, and Dennis John, 25, a parishioner who tried to help her. A woman, who is now wheelchair-bound for life, was also injured in the attack.

“Nobody can understand or comprehend the feeling, suffering, and emptiness that my family and I have to go through,” Aley John, John's mother, was quoted as saying by the CBS News. Reshma's aunt, Maria Joseph, expressed forgiveness, saying that “we [the] James family forgive you for all that you have done to Reshma,” Ms. Joseph said. “Though a husband like you never deserve that,” she added.

Joseph received a consecutive 20-year sentence for attempted murder for shooting Silvy Perincheril, who is now wheelchair-bound for life.

“The court gave him what he deserved, so there's nothing more we can say,” Suja Auummoottil, aunt of Ms. Perincheril, said.

Ms. Perincheril's son told the court: “Now, it's difficult for her to move from one room to another... She's still haunted by the defendant's angry face that morning and feels he's going to harm her.”

The defendant admitted his guilt, but insisted it was not intentional.

“I'd like to say that I'm very sorry for what I did, I didn't intend to do it but I had no control over myself that day,” he is learned to have said.

Joseph's lawyer said the sentence will be appealed. — PTI

  • Joseph killed two persons in New Jersey in 2008

  • His lawyer says the sentence will be appealed