By Josh Spreiter - OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) -- Wayman Clark has been sentenced to 10 to 12 years in prison and ordered to pay a $1,000 fine in connection with an incident inside a metro church last year.
"It's such an unusual case," said Clark's attorney Mike Poepsel. "We weren't really sure what to expect."
The incident happened in August of 2015. Surveillance video inside St. Cecilia Cathedral showed a 76-year-old woman walk in to pick up a pamphlet when two men came up behind her. Larry Leggett grabbed her purse and Wayman Clark punched her in the head, knocking her to the floor and causing a gash when she hit a table as she fell.
Clark and Leggett were eventually arrested in the case. Leggett is awaiting trial on a robbery charge.
In court Wednesday, Clark made a statement as well. " I made a mistake," said Clark. "I panicked at the time. I'm not that type of person. I'm mad at myself. I'm sorry."
Poepsel says Clark feels bad about the situation.
"Like he said in court, it's the worst thing he's ever done in his life," said Poepsel. "He's just impulsive, and unfortunately, that's one of his issues."
Clark entered a plea earlier this year to the robbery charge for which he was sentenced on Wednesday.
In the sentencing hearing Wednesday, Poepsel also made note that Clark did not have structure growing up.
"Without the structure the father provides in the home unit, and the mother had her own issues, it's very difficult for a young person to grow up, especially in his environment," said Poepsel. "I don't think he had a strong foothold on growing up."
Clark says he just wants to be with his family after one of his sons passed away when he was behind bars.
"I just want to be there for my family," said Clark. "I'm worried about my family if I'm not around."
Clark could be paroled in 4.5 years because he's been given credit to the 146 days he already spent in jail.
The church told WOWT 6 News Wednesday they've had the security cameras in place for the past six or seven years, never knowing at the time of installation they'd have an usual case like this. They say they're just happy they were able to get the bad guys on camera.
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