• January 23, 2020

Woman sentenced in mother’s death - Odessa American: Courts

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Woman sentenced in mother’s death

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Posted: Wednesday, December 11, 2019 1:27 pm

Alaniz pleaded guilty to the February 2019 smothering murder of her mother, Mary Lee Hensley, 81. Ector County District Attorney Bobby Bland said there was a jury trial, but it just went to punishment to the jury.

Bland said Alaniz agreed to plead last week. A jury was impaneled on Monday and they finished up the case Tuesday night.

“We put on evidence for a day and a half. Then the jury came back last evening,” he said.

“It was certainly something we felt was an appropriate sentence,” Bland added. “We asked for the maximum and this is in effect the maximum.”

First Assistant District Attorney Lisa Borden and Assistant District Attorney Melissa Williams prosecuted the case.  Luis Chavez represented the defendant, a news release said.

Ashley Ann Alaniz, 33, was charged with failure to report a felony, a class A misdemeanor, a previous Odessa American article said. Bland said her case is still listed as pending with the County Attorney’s Office.

Officers responded to a medical call at 5:15 p.m. Feb. 24 to the Brittany Condominiums located at 1475 Brittany Lane, the article said.

Traci Alaniz was identified by OPD as the daughter of Mary Hensley, 81, while Ashley Alaniz was identified as the granddaughter, the release stated.

Hensley’s next door neighbor said OPD didn’t leave the scene until 1 a.m. Monday morning. Another resident at the condominium complex said she had lived there for a decade and didn’t know Ashley Alaniz was living there until the night of Feb. 24, the article said.

Traci Alaniz and Ashley Alaniz told officers they were full-time care givers for Hensley, the Odessa Police Department news release stated. Investigation showed Traci Alaniz had assaulted Hensley several times during the last few months. Traci Alaniz admitted to striking Hensley three to four times a month over the past three months, the article said.

Ashley Alaniz knew of the ongoing abuse and had failed to report it, the OPD release detailed.

Bland said anything over 60 years, you’re eligible for parole after 30 years.

Odessa, TX

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