UPDATE 4/14/14 @ 3:25 p.m.
MOREHEAD, Ky. (WSAZ) - A Rowan County man was formally sentenced on Monday to 38 years in prison for killing the mother of his child.
Cassandra “Cassie” Owens, 21, of Ironton, Ohio was a student at Morehead State University when she was shot to death in March 2013.
Police said her ex-boyfriend, Casey Shay, 27, of Morehead, shot her in the head in the bedroom of their mobile home in Morehead.
Last month, Shay pleaded guilty to the murder. His plea agreement called for a sentence of 38 years. He will not eligible for parole until he serves 25 years of the sentence.
Before the judge gave Shay his sentence Monday morning, Owen’s mother talked directly to him in court.
"Casey, there are many things that I want to share with you," said Melody York.
York described the moment she learned of the murder, picking up a phone call from her other daughter.
"She said, 'Have you seen the news?' And again, I say no and then I asked her the first thing that comes to my mind. I asked if Cassie was alive and she said, 'no,' " York said.
Since the murder, York says she's begun a ministry. She said her religion has allowed her to forgive him.
"Casey, even though many hate, you need to know that I don't. I don't hate you. I hate what you did with a passion, but I don't hate you. I can't say that I love you, but I don't hate you," York said.
The judge also ordered that Shay have no contact with the couple's daughter while he's in custody.
York said she wasn't happy with the sentence. She'd hoped for life in prison.
Cassandra “Cassie” Owens was a student at Morehead State University when she was shot to death last March.
Police said her ex-boyfriend, Casey Shay, 27, of Morehead, shot her in the head in the bedroom of their mobile home in Morehead
The pair had a two-year-old daughter together and had broken up about six months before the shooting.
Friday, Shay pleaded guilty to killing Owens during a hearing in Rowan County Circuit Court. The plea agreement calls for a sentence of 38 years. He will not eligible for parole until he serves 25 years of the sentence.
Shay will be formally sentenced next month.