Julie was convinced that her husband was focused on her wellness, trying to ensure she stay hydrated by giving her Gatorade to drink. In truth, he was slowly poisoning her.
"On the outside, he portrayed himself as a caring, loving husband … the cruelty that, that goes with a slow poisoning death …I just found it very, very cold," said Bailey, the Waltham detective.
It took less than two days for the 12-person jury to reach a verdict. James Keown was found guilty of first degree murder with deliberate pre-meditation.
Upon hearing the verdict, James briefly closed his eyes and bowed his head, but otherwise he showed little emotion. His only courtroom supporter was his mother, Betty Keown, who sat alone, stoically clutching her Bible.
Julie's family was finally given a chance to confront James before he was sentenced. Julie's mother addressed the court and said, "In my mind, James is no longer a person. He is just a mass of flesh and bone taking up space on this earth. A real person never would have done such an evil thing."
Arguably the harshest statement came from Judge Sandra Hamlin. When she addressed James and the court, she stated vehemently, "The way in which this defendant secretly and methodically planned and carried out the poisoning of his wife and allowed her to suffer so horribly and die such a slow and painful death makes this court feel that I am truly in the presence of an evil person."
Following the Hamlin's statement, James was sentenced to life in prison. When asked about how she felt the day she heard the verdict, Holly Oldag, Julie's sister-in-law, sounded relieved.
"I was so happy to know [James] would be in prison for the rest of his life. Just knowing what an evil man he is is extremely frightening.," she said. "[To know] you were so close to a monster and had no idea. I mean, it just scares me to death to know we had him in our home, in our wedding, around our children. It's just so frightening."
Nancy Oldag said the verdict brought both relief and a sense of clarity.
"I looked at him. And it was just a moment and I just realized that person sitting over there, he is not the person who I thought was married to my daughter," she said. "It was just a realization that sunk into my head that I don't know who he is."
Finally, the Oldags were able to get some closure. But they will never know why their son-in-law would commit such a heinous crime, especially to someone who loved him so much.
"Julie was such a good person," Nancy said. "It wasn't like he was married to someone who didn't care about him, and she would have followed him to the ends of the Earth."
The Oldags said they think it is important for people to know Julie's story, in part so people know the warning signs of ethylene glycol poisoning. They said they also support a pending federal bill called the "Antifreeze Bittering Act," which would require manufacturers to add a bittering agent to antifreeze to help prevent the accidental poisoning of hundreds of children, thousands of pets and unknown number of "death by antifreeze" crimes in this country every year.