Third Article

By someone else on December 19th, 1997

Teen sentenced for role in violent robbery

By Matt Flores _ Express-News Staff Writer _ December 19, 1997 A teen-ager was sentenced to 15 years behind bars Thursday for her role in a sex-for-cash deal that escalated into a botched robbery and attack on a 65-year-old man. The assault also ended in the death of a 17-year-old accomplice, who was shot by the man, Borge Hansen, in self-defense. In an emotional half-day of testimony that left the defendant, her parents and the girl’s juvenile probation officer in tears, District Judge Andy Mireles ordered the girl be assigned to the Texas Youth Commission, where she must serve a minimum of three years before she can be considered for parole.

“I thought the sentence was appropriate,” said prosecutor Jill Mata, who had recommended the 15-year sentence.

“The parents haven’t exhibited an ability to supervise her, and you can’t just watch her 24 hours a day in a confined environment and expect her to do well,” Mata added, referring to testimony earlier from the girl’s parents that she received constant supervision.

The girl’s attorney, Diane Rivera, said she was surprised by the sentence and promised to appeal it.

“I’m very surprised because the judge noted that she wasn’t a principal participant in the crime,” Rivera said.

The girl, whose name is not being printed because she was a juvenile at the time of the offense, was convicted Wednesday of aggravated robbery after a jury deliberated just more than 50 minutes.

Prosecutors presented several witnesses Thursday, including school and law enforcement officials, who testified the girl had persistent behavioral problems, was known to associate with gang members and that she once was convicted of marijuana possession.

The girl also had a shoplifting charge pending at the time of the aggravated robbery, they said.

But in emotional defense testimony, the girl’s parents described her as an average teen-ager who sometimes used bad judgment, but one who never was violent.

“She’s a normal teen-ager. She’ll push her curfew a little bit, back talk a little bit . . . but she’s not aggressive or violent,” her mother testified.

Juvenile probation officer Carol Sawtelle tearfully recommended the girl be placed in a Texas Youth Commission facility.

“She has to answer for what she did,” Sawtelle said.

According to prosecutors and state’s witnesses, the girl and a companion on April 8 negotiated a price of $100 to have sex with Hansen while the three were meeting at a Northeast Side coffee shop.

Hansen, an Army retiree and volunteer S h r i n e r C l o w n, then drove the girls to his house.

After a few minutes there, Hansen testified the girls began wandering through the house without his permission.

Hansen said he then changed his mind and took the girls back to the coffee shop. After a short period, the girls returned with two male companions, one of whom attacked Hansen with a knife.

It was during the attack that Hansen pulled a gun and fatally shot Jessica Longoria. The others fled after taking liquor, power tools, jewelry and other items.

The two males, Charles David Cameron and Robert Edward Kennedy, both 17, are awaiting trials in state district court.

Filed under: teens on trial
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