Murder victim’s mom stands up to her daughter’s killer

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A former Burlington car salesman is headed to prison for the rest of his life, sentenced Wednesday by a Scott County judge for the murder of a Davenport woman.

Angela Hennes was found strangled to death back in 2007, her body dumped in a cornfield, burned to try and cover up evidence. Chad Welsh was convicted of the crime in April.

Hennes was a mother of two and pregnant at the time of her death. She was working as a prostitute, when Welsh picked her up near downtown Davenport.

In an emotional day in court, Henne's mother Linda, stood up and addressed her daughter's killer.

''The many days and nights of trying to figure out who could possibly have done such a horrible thing has come to an end'', Hennes read from a prepared statement. ''I pray that someday we may be able to forgive you. It's what God wants and what Angela would have wanted. Angela was a daughter, a sister, a mother, and you took that all away from us''.

Angela Hennes has one adult son, the other now 14 years old. They too, had a message for Welsh, which their grandmother passed along in court.

''Angela's 14-year old boy who was ten at the time has asked me to let Mr. Welsh know that he probably had his mother around for birthdays and Christmas the last five years, while he has not. You may be going to prison for life, but our prison is within us'', Hennes read.

In reality, Welsh's former roomate tells News 8 that Welsh had long been estranged from his mother.

Scott County investigators who cracked the cold case were in the courtroom today. They never gave up, and eventually linked DNA evidence to Welsh after he was arrested on federal child pornography charges at his house in Burlington.

Welsh testified that he accidentally strangled Hennes to death during rough sex, and continued the same defense at his sentencing.

''I'm sorry for what happened, but it was an accident'', he told the judge, who said he believed if Welsh were ever back on the streets he would ''kill again''.