Judge sentences Lexington killer to 35 years in prison

jkegley@herald-leader.comFebruary 22, 2013 

A Lexington man convicted of shooting an acquaintance and setting his body on fire was sentenced Friday to 35 years in prison.

Fayette Circuit Court Judge Thomas Clark ordered Sidney Lane Williams Jr., 38, to begin serving his sentence immediately. Williams told the judge he did not want to make a statement at Friday's hearing.

Last month, a jury found Williams guilty in Fayette County Circuit Court of first-degree manslaughter, tampering with evidence and abuse of a corpse. The jury recommended 20 years in prison. However, the jury also found him guilty of being a persistent felon, a charge that added 15 years to his sentence.

Williams was convicted of killing a former co-worker, Victor Martin, 39, in 2010. He dumped Martin's body near a driveway on Russell Cave Road and lit it on fire.

Prosecutors argued that Williams killed Martin because he was convinced that Martin had burglarized his home. Defense attorneys argued that Martin drew a gun on Williams, and Williams shot in self-defense.

Public defender Chris Tracy said Williams plans to appeal the conviction.

Josh Kegley: (859) 231-3197. Twitter: @HLpublicsafety.

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