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Grant man sentenced to life for parents' murder

WILLIAMSTOWN — A Grant County man who pleaded guilty last month to murdering his parents was sentenced Wednesday to life in prison with the possibility of parole in 20 years.

Russell G. Bramlage, 23, was indicted in April on several charges, including two counts of murder in the deaths of Terry and Lynda Bramlage, both 53. Police found their bodies in the basement of their home in Williamstown on Nov. 13. Both had been shot twice with a shotgun.

On Wednesday, Circuit Judge Stephen L. Bates accepted the prosecution's recommendation that Bramlage serve a life sentence for each murder count, 20 years for a first-degree robbery charge and five years each on the charges of tampering with physical evidence and criminal possession of a forged instrument.

The Boone County Commonwealth's Attorney's Office is expected to file a plea agreement soon regarding charges pending in that county. Prosecutors in Boone have recommended one to five years for second-degree criminal possession of a forged instrument and five years for three counts of theft by unlawful taking.

During sentencing Wednesday in Grant County, Bramlage said he wanted to speak, but he did not want to discuss what was on his mind in open court. "The people that need to hear it, they will hear it," Bramlage said.

Commonwealth's Attorney Jim Crawford said he didn't know what Bramlage planned to say, but he had hoped that Bramlage would apologize to the family.

He called the Bramlage case unexplainable.

Crawford said several relatives submitted impact statements to the court. And although there were some disagreements, the plea agreement reflected the consensus among relatives who did not want Bramlage to receive the death penalty.

Defense attorneys were not available Wednesday to comment on the outcome of the case.

Bill Schild, Lynda Bramlage's brother, said he was satisfied with the sentence and that the family was looking forward to moving on with their lives. Schild said he was headed to Keeneland after court with his family. "It is what it is," he said. "We're glad that this part of it's over."

Schild said his family will support Bramlage if he is paroled, but they will never condone what he did.

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