CHIPLEY - Sean Dowis, of Caryville, was sentenced Friday to 45 years in prison in the stabbing murder of his former live-in girlfriend Deena Zimmerman. Dowis, the victim's live-in boyfriend, pleaded no contest Friday during his sentencing by Washington County Circuit Judge Tim Register.
The ruling comes just two weeks before the anniversary of the missing report of the then 45-year-old Zimmerman.
On May 31 last year, Dowis, 48, and his 49-year-old brother Greg Dowis fully confessed to the murder, which apparently had happened just days before. Dowis was "heavily intoxicated" and "snapped" during an argument between the two, officials said. Zimmerman's body, which was found at a gravesite in the eastern part of Washington County, had sustained multiple stab wounds.
Zimmerman's family addressed the court, saying Dowis had "irreversibly changed their lives forever," according to a news release from Washington County Sheriff's Office.
Greg Dowis, who was charged with accessory after the fact and awaits sentencing at the Washington County Jail.
"This is a case that we will never forget," Washington County Sheriff Kevin Crews said in a statement. "Ms. Zimmerman’s family is unforgettably loving and supportive, this should have never happened."