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Michigan grandmother sentenced for murdering grandson

We posted last month about a Michigan grandmother being tried for shooting and killing her 17-year-old grandson in her suburban Detroit home. The 75-year-old woman claimed self-defense, but the jury did not believe her and convicted her of second-degree murder. She was sentenced to a minimum of 22 years in prison-- 20 years minimum for second-degree murder and 2 years for a felony firearm charge that must be served consecutively. She will get credit for the 11 months she spent in jail prior to sentencing. Still, this will likely be a life sentence for the elderly woman. That is what her lawyer argued when he pleaded with the judge for leniency.

The woman repeatedly blamed the victim's parents for leaving him with her to finish his last year of high school, while they tended to his sister in Arizona who was undergoing treatment for a brain tumor. She claimed the teenaged boy was too much for her to handle due to his drug use. She said she shot him because he struck her first, and he was trying to leave town to avoid punishment for a potential probation violation. But there was no evidence the boy harmed his grandmother. He supposedly failed a drug test earlier that day, testing positive for synthetic marijuana. Yet there was no evidence to suggest the boy was planning or trying to leave-- he was shot wearing just a pair of shorts and socks, and had plans to see a friend later that evening.

Most damaging to the woman's case of self-defense was likely the 911 call where the boy begged for help as he gasped for air, reported his grandmother had shot him, and then she shot him again as the dispatcher listened. She fired 10 rounds total, striking him 6 times. Two of the shots were to his back.

The victim's mother, the defendant's daughter, spoke at the sentencing and asked the judge to show her mother "no mercy" for the murder of her son, and told the court her mother is "pure evil".

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