GIST: Still maintaining his innocence, Leo Ackley was sentenced a second time to spend the rest of his life in prison. Ackley, 30, was sentenced Monday to life without parole for felony murder and first-degree child abuse in the 2011 death of Baylee Stenman, 3. The daughter of his former girlfriend died Aug. 1, 2011, from what pathologists said was blunt-force trauma to her head suffered a few days earlier. Calhoun County prosecutors and the Battle Creek police alleged that Ackley caused the injury while he was caring for the child on July 28, 2011, but Ackley maintained she may have been injured in a fall from bed or several days earlier in a fall while playing.........Ackley was convicted of open murder and child abuse in 2012 but the case was reversed on appeal because the defense did not present an expert to dispute the cause of death. "This case came back for retrial," Hallacy said. "Now a second jury has convicted you of the same thing. Twenty-four independent people from across this county have come together and come up with the same decision. To me, to get 12 people to agree on anything in this world is difficult. Given the evidence that was presented twice, there have been two juries that convicted you." Outside the courtroom, Ackley's mother, Linda Byrd dismissed that conclusion. "We were in Calhoun County and they were not two separate juries," she said. "They saw it on TV and they were watching the whole time it was going on. I could tell by the look on some of the jurors they were not happy they had to say guilty. I don't know if anyone else noticed but you don't come out upset and crying because you just convicted somebody you thought hurt somebody."
Byrd said her family will continue seeking a reversal of the conviction."