Hemy Neuman’s retrial for killing fellow Jewish community member Rusty Sneiderman ended Tuesday, Aug. 23, with a guilty verdict and a sentence of life in prison without the possibility of parole.
Neuman’s defense had claimed the 57-year-old suffered from “erotomanic delusions” that caused him to gun down Sneiderman outside the Dunwoody Prep preschool in November 2010, but the jury rejected his claims of insanity.
Instead, the jury of eight women and four men found the former East Cobb resident guilty of malice murder and a felony weapons charge, for which Neuman was sentenced to an additional five years in prison.
Sneiderman’s brother, Steve, spoke in court before the sentencing by DeKalb County Superior Court Judge Gregory Adams. He said he and his family are serving a life sentence without possibility of contact with his brother, whom he called a trusted mentor.
“I can’t pick up the phone and call Rusty to get his advice anymore,” he said. “That is a life sentence without possibility of parole, and that is what we ask the judge to impose on Mr. Neuman.”
Neuman was found guilty but insane during his first murder trial and sentenced to life behind bars without a chance for parole, but the state Supreme Court last year overturned that conviction on that grounds that a court ruling during the trial had violated attorney-client confidentiality.
Shortly before the sentencing, DeKalb District Attorney Robert James told the court that Neuman was not insane. He pointed to the steps the killer took before and after the shooting to avoid being caught.
“Mr. Neuman visited Andrea Sneiderman and her family while they mourned for their loss,” James said. “He even attended Rusty Sneiderman’s funeral and poured dirt over the grave. He did it all to conceal his actions.”
Andrea Sneiderman, who worked with her husband’s killer at GE, did not testify during the retrial. She was convicted of perjury, as well as obstruction of justice, for her testimony in the first trial about her relationship with Neuman.
Public defender Duana Samson made a final statement to the court Tuesday, saying she had “no doubt of Neuman’s mental illness.” The defense requested the possibility of parole and a suspended sentence on the firearms felony.
Neuman declined to make a statement to the court.