NEW ORLEANS -- The family of a 28-year-old New Orleans woman gruesomely murdered says it can finally begin the healing process.
On Thursday afternoon, a jury found Nia Robertson's killer, Mike Tracyzk, guilty of first-degree murder.
"She was a very loving, caring, friendly, wanna help the world kind of person," is how Nia's boyfriend Jeff Bromberger describes the woman he calls his soul mate, lost forever.
"Nothing is going to bring her back. I'm glad that justice was done," said Bromberger.
After five long years of waiting, Nia's parents walked out of the Orleans Parish Criminal Court House with District Attorney Leon Cannizzaro.
"We're tired and drained but very satisfied with the results the jury came back with," Cannizzaro said.
After deliberating for an hour and a half, the jury found Tracyzk guilty of the 28-year-old's murder.
"People need to know that when wrongs are done they'll be punished for it," said Nia's mother, Marvel Robertson.
The high-profile case dates back to 2007, when Nia was enjoying a drink inside Pal's Lounge in Bayou St. John. According to court documents, Tracyk attacked another patron and then slashed Nia's throat before leaving the bar.
The district attorney's office says despite Tracyk having a history of mental illness, what helped put him behind bars for life was a long list of witnesses -- all willing to testify at trial.
"All of the witnesses, eternally grateful for them," said Robertson.
Though her young life was cut short, those who loved Nia never gave up on seeking justice.
"This man will never walk around freely and he'll forever have to remember what he did and pay for it," said Bromberger.
In response to Thursday's verdict the owner of Pal's Lounge, Suzanne Accorsi, issued this statement:
"We're satisfied that the trial has brought closure to Nia's family and we will always honor her memory."
Tracyk will be formally sentenced on Nov. 29. The district attorney's office says he is expected to spend life behind bars without parole.