Tonawanda News

September 13, 2013

Lowry sentence unchanged after hearing

By Michael Regan
The Tonawanda News

Tonawanda News — LOCKPORT — A minor error in sentencing procedures in June led Brian C. Lowry back to Niagara County Court on Thursday. 

Lowry, who pleaded guilty to second-degree murder for killing a North Tonawanda woman, Heather M. Rylowicz, in her Lincoln Avenue home in November, was sentenced to 15 years to life as part of a plea deal. 

Yet he also faced charges on nine other counts, which led to an sentence of one to four years for a fourth-degree grand larceny conviction, among others. 

During the June sentencing however, Judge Richard Kloch, had incorrectly named the charge as a D-Felony, rather than an E-felony. On Thursday that oversight was corrected and will have no effect on Lowry’s overall sentence, which is being served concurrently, according the the Niagara County District Attorney’s office.  

The formality on Thursday was a far cry from his June appearance, when Rylowicz’s father verbally lambasted Lowry for killing his daughter, an ex-girlfriend of Lowry’s, before stealing her Ford Taurus and disappearing for weeks. The theft of the vehicle led to the grand larceny charge. Her body was discovered on Nov. 21. It was the first homicide in the city in nearly a decade. 

Lowry said little during the affair on Thursday, only expressing astonishment to his attorney that the short proceeding was ramped up so quickly, lasting only a matter of minutes, as he stood wearing a green prison jump suit and cuffed at the wrists and ankles next to Assistant Public Defender Christopher Privateer. A short while later, he was led back to state prison. 

Prosecutors have said that despite the plea deal, which likely shortened the length of his sentence from 25 years to life to 15 years to life but spared Rylowicz family a lengthy and likely grisly trial, they believed a Parole Board will not let him see the light of day for years after he is eligible for release. 

Lowry is not eligible for parole until 2028.

Contact reporter Michael Regan at 693-1000, ext. 4115.