Kanawha County assistant prosecutor Fred Giggenbach accused March of insincerity, and pointed out that he passed by Goble's "missing" posters pinned at Kelley's Mens Shop during the two years she lay in a shallow grave on his property.
"A man who does that does not have a conscience," Giggenbach said. "Mr. March needs to spend his last breath looking at the ceiling of the prison or the prison walls."
March's defense team asked Kanawha Circuit Judge Duke Bloom to consider granting him mercy, which would make him eligible for parole after serving 15 years of a life sentence. Bloom denied the request.
During the first few minutes of the hearing, March held his head in his hands as forensic anthropologist Douglas William Owlsey, of the Smithsonian Institute, described photos that flashed on a projector screen. Some of the photos showed digital representations of neck bones March fractured when he strangled Goble. Others showed Goble's body parts, wrapped in some sort of plastic, lying in the 4-foot by 2-foot grave that had been dug for her body.
Owlsey said that impressions in Goble's nasal area might suggest that her nose was struck and broken at some point before her death. March's lawyer, Richard Holicker, noted that the anthropologist was only speculating. Owlsey said that her nose also could have been broken during the course of the dismemberment.
Just before he handed down Thursday's sentence, Bloom called March's acts "monstrous" and added that Goble's strangulation in particular was a "cold, calculated, personal death."
Goble's family members declined to speak directly during the sentencing. Friend Billy Herrald said there was not much he could say that was not already said by prosecutors.
"He will not see the light of day outside of prison for the rest of his life," Herrald said. "It's a relief."Reach Zac Taylor at zachary.tay...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-5189.