Nation

Grandmother sentenced in teen’s death

Sandra Layne was led out of court after being sentenced to at least 22 years in prison Thursday.

Vaughn Gurganian/AP

Sandra Layne was led out of court after being sentenced to at least 22 years in prison Thursday.

PONTIAC, Mich. — A 75-year-old Detroit-area woman who killed her grandson expressed remorse Thursday but repeatedly accused his parents of dumping a troubled boy at her doorstep during a desperate, emotional plea to avoid a prison sentence that likely means death behind bars.

The judge wasn’t swayed, sending Sandra Layne away for at least 22 years and capping a wrenching case that revealed family strife, adolescent rebellion, and fatal consequences.

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Joanthan Hoffman, 17, was shot six times, including twice in the back, last spring in Oakland County’s West Bloomfield Township. Layne, a former teacher and real estate agent, said she shot him out of fear during a physical altercation, but a jury in March rejected her claim of self-defense.

Prosecutors said there were no signs of Layne being injured by Hoffman. A recording of a 911 call shows him being shot again while pleading for help — a critical piece of evidence that jurors played over and over during deliberations. Judge Denise Langford Morris zeroed in on it, too, wondering why Layne simply didn’t call police if she felt helpless.

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‘‘Grandmothers are supposed to protect. . . . Why did you keep shooting and how could you keep shooting?’’ Morris asked.

Layne sobbed heavily during a long, rambling address to the judge.

‘‘I’m sorry for what I did. I apologize to everyone I’ve hurt, everyone,” she said.

Associated Press

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