A 47-year-old woman found guilty of fatally stabbing a 56-year-old man in his Riverside home in the fall of 2010 has received a nine-year prison sentence.
On Wednesday, Nov. 14, Ontario Superior Court Justice Edward Then ordered Maritza Velasquez to serve seven more years after time deducted for pre-trial custody.
The Mexico-born woman’s lawyer, Paul Tomlinson, had requested a five-year sentence less pre-trial custody, while Crown Attorney David Boulet called for a 10- to 12-year sentence.
Initially charged with second-degree murder, she pleaded guilty to manslaughter in July.
At a September hearing, Velasquez claimed she killed Dennis Brown, whose lifeless body was located by a friend Oct. 26, 2010 at his Munro Street home, in self-defense.
The divorced father of two was located on a sofa bed suffering from multiple stab wounds to his right forearm, face and neck, and was pronounced dead at the scene.
A subsequent post-mortem examination determined Brown died from stab wounds to the chest.
Following the murder, Velasquez fled to South Bend, Indiana, to stay with family members but was apprehended Saturday, Oct. 30, 2011.
She was held in custody at St. Joseph County Jail until an extradition hearing was arranged and returned to Toronto Feb. 23, 2011. Velasquez had a court appearance the following day.
- Joanna Lavoie with files from Torstar News Service