- (Photo: San Augustine Sheriff's Office)
Two Texas women hid a boy for 8 years after kidnapping him when he was just 8 months old. The two women were sentenced to prison on Tuesday after an East Texas jury found them guilty.
According to reports, Gloria Walker was sentenced to 30 years for injury to a child and eight years for kidnapping. The sentences will be served concurrently.
Walker's daughter, Krystle Tanner, was also sentenced to eight years for kidnapping and eight years for reckless injury to a child, and will have to also serve those sentences concurrently.
The two women were convicted of the 2004 disappearance of 8 month old Miguel Morin, who is now 8.
San Augustine County District Attorney Kevin Dutton has said, "We believe that justice was done on behalf of Miguel."
The two women have denied kidnapping, telling state District Judge Charles Mitchell that the baby's mother had given him away to them.
Following the sentencing being read out, Walker said, "Justice is not served. We have not hurt no child. We loved and cared for him."
Prosecutors had told jurors earlier in the case that the two women had neglected the child over the 8 years they had abducted him for. They claim they did not allow him to go to school, and that they also denied him appropriate medical care when he needed it.
Defense attorneys had argued that this was not a case of kidnapping because the boy was sold to the women by his biological mother.
Dutton had stated in his closing argument that the women's claim that they were freely given the child by his mother was absurd, and that this was not evidenced by their actions over the 8 years.
He said, "If Ms. Walker and Ms. Tanner had a right to little Miguel, why wasn't he in school? Why didn't you get the rest of his immunizations? Why didn't you take him to the dentist? They knew they didn't have that right. They knew they couldn't put that baby out in the public eye."
Here is a video interview with Miguel's mother after he was found after 8 years: