Family remembers Debbie Liles year after brutal murder

New information shows how badly Liles was beaten

JACKSONVILLE, Fla – It's been one year since beloved music teacher Debbie Liles was snatched away from those who love her.

Michael Liles, Debbie Liles' husband, spent their 42nd wedding anniversary in a pretrial hearing with his wife's accused killer.

"They say grieving is not just a process, it's something you have to go through. I'm not done with that chapter yet," Michael Liles said.

Debbie Liles' murder shocked the city last year when she was brutally beaten to death inside of her Panama Park home on March 23, 2017. 

The home where Michael and Debbie Liles raised their five children is the same place Debbie Liles took her last breath. 

"We recently found out just how badly she was hurt. Initially, we were told the preliminary coroners report suggested that she could have been unconscious from the first blow. Since then, we've discovered she was beaten severely," Michael Liles said.  

Debbie Liles was beaten to death by a stranger, and police later arrested Adam Lawson in connection. 

"Both of her jaws were broken. Her right ear was almost removed. It's just devastating to realize how much of a battle she had," said Michael Liles.

Now it's been a year and Michael Liles is working as head of the Justice Coalition. He says he wants to be sure other victims' families aren't going through the pain he and his loved ones have endured. 

"Most of these hearings last approximately five minutes, maybe six. Basically, they're changing the calendar dates. I actually spent my 42nd anniversary in the courtroom with the guy who took her from me. I'm still angry about that," Michael Liles said.  

Michael Liles has several grandchildren and he says it hurts that at least one of them will never get to meet their grandmother.