N.M Mom Gets Prison After 13-Year-Old Son Was Forced to Wear Diapers and Live in Dog Crate

People - 11-29

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A New Mexico mother was sentenced to 12 years in prison in connection with the death of her 13-year-old son, who was tortured and abused before being found in a shallow grave last January.Before she was sentenced, Tracy Pena, 36, pleaded guilty to one count of child abuse resulting in a death and three counts of conspiracy to traffic controlled substances, according to local stationKRQE,theSante Fe New Mexicanand theAlbuquerque Journal.Pena’s son, Jeremiah Valencia, died in November 2017 before he was found months later in a shallow grave on the side of the road near Nambe. He had been tortured, starved, beaten, forced to live in a dog crate and wear diapers, according to prosecutors.Prosecutors said the guilty plea recognized Pena as a victim of domestic abuse at the hands of her boyfriend, Thomas Ferguson,who killed himself in prison last Aprilat age 42, local station KOB-4 reports. At the time, Ferguson was awaiting trial on first-degree murder charges in Jeremiah’s death.