Dallas stepmom gets 85 years in dehydration death

Published on NewsOK Modified: January 22, 2013 at 12:34 pm •  Published: January 22, 2013
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"We trusted you with our baby," she said in a statement to the court after the sentence was handed down. "If I could speak for Jonathan right now, I would know — you would know — that he still loves you."

Alberson is expected to be eligible for parole after serving one-quarter of her sentence, or a little more than 20 years, according to Debbie Denmon, spokeswoman for the Dallas County District Attorney's office. Alberson's attorney, Bill Fay, said he planned to appeal the conviction and sentence, but wouldn't say on what grounds.

"I can't comment about a case that's still pending," Fay said.

The boy's father, Michael Ray James, testified against Alberson because he said he wanted to see "that justice gets done." James, 43, will be tried for felony injury to a child next month.

Shotwell said she's forgiven Alberson but many members of the family, including Jonathan's mother, have not. She said they remember Jonathan as an active little boy who wanted to wake up before dawn so he could ride his bike.

"I had to remind him that everyone else was asleep but us, and that he had to be very quiet outside, which he couldn't do," Shotwell said.

While in jail, Denmon said, Alberson became friends with an inmate involved in a high-profile child injury case: Elizabeth Escalona, who was sentenced to 99 years in prison last year for gluing her toddler's hands to a wall and attacking her over potty training problems.

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