A jury has found a retired Toronto police officer guilty of murdering his realtor wife in Mississauga two years ago.

According to a Toronto Star report, the jury took about four hours of deliberations to reach a decision in the case of Lawrence Kenneth Ryan, 60.

Justice Joseph Fragomeni sentenced Ryan to life in prison after the jury returned to the Brampton courtroom with a verdict of guilty on one count of second-degree murder.

However, Ryan's parole eligibility waiting period will be set at a later hearing. He will have to serve a minimum of 10 years before being eligible for parole, but the maximum period is 25 years.

The defence had tried to argue that Ryan was guilty of manslaughter for his actions on Nov. 9, 2008 on the grounds of drunkenness.

The convicted man approached his wife Susan from behind and shot her with a .22-calibre rifle as she made breakfast.

The Crown argued that Ryan knew exactly what he was doing and didn't start drinking until after he shot his wife.

Susan Ryan, a close friend of Mississauga Mayor Hazel McCallion, had once served as president of the Mississauga Real Estate Board.

Colleagues described her as very community-minded, having worked as a volunteer for causes such as Big Brothers, social housing projects and victims' services.

Before his retirement after about 30 years with the Toronto Police Service, Lawrence Ryan had worked in south Etobicoke's 22 Division.

Friends pronounced themselves shocked at the time of the murder. The trial never revealed a motive, and Ryan never took the stand.