Mother convicted of child injury in death of 10-year-old

Posted Friday, Jan. 18, 2013  comments  Print Reprints

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DALLAS -- A Dallas woman was convicted Friday of second-degree felony injury to a child in the death of her 10-year-old stepson, who was denied water for days during a record-breaking heat wave in July 2011.

As the punishment phase of the trial began, prosecutors called on jurors to give Tina Marie Alberson, 44, the maximum sentence of life in prison. Defense attorneys urged jurors to impose a five-year sentence, the minimum.

The jury began deliberating a sentence Friday afternoon but adjourned. Deliberations are to resume Tuesday.

In July 2011, twins Jonathan and Joseph James, 10, were on a monthlong court-ordered custody visit with their father, Mike James, Alberson's husband. Authorities have said Jonathan was kept in the house without water for five days as punishment for bed-wetting and other things that Alberson considered infractions. Two window air-conditioning units did not keep the whole house cool. The region was in the middle of a record-breaking string of days when the high temperature was 100 or higher. The high on July 25, the day Jonathan died, was 106.

Mike James, 43, is set for trial next month.

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