By Joan Murray

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FORT LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) —  It was supposed to be sentencing day for a man convicted of murdering his wife, though her body has never been found.

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Vilet Torrez disappeared back in 2012. In July 2017, a jury convicted her husband, Cid Torrez, of second degree murder – a conviction that carries a prison term of anywhere from 30 years to life in prison.

Torrez did not testify during his trial and has always maintained he’s innocent.

“I do respect the jury’s decision,” said Cid Torrez. “But I do come and plea for mercy. I have not committed a crime.”

The couple’s daughter who was 12-years-old at the time and upstairs with her two younger brothers described the pain of losing her mother.

“I can’t even celebrate my own birthday without crying, knowing that she is not there to see me turn 18,” said their daughter, also named Vilet Torrez.

Asking for the maximum sentence, Vilet’s grieving brother remembered the sister he lost.

“She was the leader of this family yet she was killed by the person she loved the most -her first real boyfriend. This person killed her with their kids upstairs. She died like a tortured animal,” said her brother Javier Blanco.

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Police and prosecutors said Torrez was enraged about his wife seeing other men after their marriage crumbled. They claim his obsession led him to secretly install spyware on her phone.

Prosecutors argued that on the morning of March 31, 2012, Vilet Torrez was returning to their Miramar townhome when Cid confronted and killed her, then buried her body in the Everglades.

Defense argued they are the checks and balances of the judicial system. They said that because Vilet’s body was never found there is no definitive proof of exactly what happened to her.

Prosecutors said they had plenty of evidence that Cid killed his wife.

But on the verge of sentencing, Cid Torrez through the proceedings into turmoil with a bizarre pronouncement that halted court.

“Commander in Chief, the witch hunt ends here,” said Cid Torrez.

Proceedings were then suspended by the judge until October 23rd so Torrez can undergo further mental health evaluations.

Depending on the findings, Torrez could face a lighter sentence.

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