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Keep Houston Press Free
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Ryan Sumstad: Alleged Con Man Gets 20 Years for Wife's Death

A Montgomery County man charged with killing his wife in 2011 was sentenced to 20 years in prison March 20 as part of a plea agreement, according to the Montgomery County Police Reporter.

Prosecutors said Ryan Sumstad strangled his wife, Christie, in the couple's bedroom after an argument, while their three children slept in their rooms.

Sumstad had said his wife committed suicide. After his arrest four months later, Sumstad's history of allegedly crooked business deals and financial problems came to light.

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Sherri Passmore, Christie's sister, was quoted in the Police Reporter as saying the plea deal -- for manslaughter with a deadly weapon -- "will enable the kids to put this weight behind them and grow up without the experience of a trial. Hopefully, it's better for us all."

Sumstad received 1,003 days' credit for time served, "making him eligible for parole in seven years," according to the story. "However, the prosecutor and family pointed out that was only eligibility and not a guarantee."

After three years of languishing, we're glad this case is finally over.

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