The mother of Rushon Hamilton sang praises to the heaven yesterday that her son was not sent to the gallows.
Hamilton, a former police constable, was sentenced to life imprisonment for the 2008 murder of 14-year-old schoolgirl Jhaneel Goulbourne.
He was ordered to serve 35 years before qualifying for parole.
The prosecution sought the death penalty.
Sentencing was handed down by Supreme Court judge Justice Lloyd Hibbert in the Home Circuit Court.
Speaking with The Gleaner/Power 106 News Centre yesterday, Christiana Grant Hayman, who describes herself as a prayer warrior, said she spent several hours fasting and praying that her son would not be sentenced to hang.
Grant Hayman said she was satisfied with the judge's ruling as she said having a son alive in prison was better than having him in the ground.
"God answers prayer. They were looking for the death penalty but God stepped in and my son is alive," said Grant Hayman.
She said her son was in an upbeat mood when she last spoke with him.
Meanwhile, Grant Hayman said she would be going back to the altar to continue to pray for her son, who she insisted was innocent.
She said her son would be vindicated at the end of his appeal.
"I am a strong woman. I know that things sometimes don't turn out how we want them but God answers prayer."
She continued: "My son is not the only innocent man that has gone to prison but things will work out."