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Michigan woman, 75, gets at least 22 years in prison for killing grandson

Max Ortiz / AP

Sandra Layne, 75, looks over at her husband, Fred Layne, moments after she is sentenced in Oakland County, Mich., Circuit Court on Thursday, April 18.

A 75-year-old Detroit-area woman was sentenced to 22 to 40 years in prison Thursday for shooting her 17-year-old grandson to death last year.

Sandra Layne, of West Bloomfield Township, Mich., was convicted last month of second-degree murder in the death of Jonathan Hoffman, who was shot six times, including twice in the back.

Jurors rejected her claim of self-defense.


Sentencing guidelines called for Layne to be sentenced to 12 to 20 years, but Oakland County Circuit Judge Denise Langford Morris used her discretion to increase the term, pointedly asking Layne several times Thursday, "Why did you keep shooting him?"

In a long sentencing statement, Layne apologized for Jonathan's death but said his parents should have been responsible for him after he began using drugs and became violent.


"I don't want to die in jail or prison," she said, sobbing loudly.

But even Jonathan's mother, Jennifer Hoffman — Layne's own daughter — asked for the maximum possible sentence, telling the court her mother was "pure evil."

She smiled broadly and gave a thumbs-up sign as her mother was sentenced. Afterward, she told reporters that her mother was "a complete narcissist and a liar."

"I wish I had seen signs of how evil she was before I left her with my son," Hoffman said.

Layne's attorney, Jerome Sabbota, said after the hearing that he planned to appeal.

"Look, this is a death sentence for her," he said, according to the Detroit Free Press. "She doesn't deserve to die in prison."

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