A New Orleans woman was sentenced to 40 years in prison on Friday (June 30), for her role in the deaths of a father and son who were killed in their Metairie home.
Haraquon Degruy, 20, pleaded guilty to two counts of manslaughter in admitting her guilt as the getaway driver in the April 22, 2015, crime spree that culminated with deaths of David Pence, 56, and his son Nicolas Pence, 25. Manslaughter’s maximum punishment is 40 years in prison.
Degruy had been charged as a principal to second-degree murder. After discussions with the Pence family, the Jefferson Parish District Attorney’s Office agreed to the plea. Beth Pence, who lost her husband and son in the crime, provided victim impact testimony, during which she told the judge, “They were ready to prosecute, but we couldn’t do a trial again. It would have been too much.”
The killer, Dexter Allen, 19, was convicted as charged by a Jefferson Parish jury in October of two counts of second-degree murder. In April, Judge Ray Steib of the 24th Judicial District Court sentenced Allen to spend the rest of his life in prison without the possibility of parole.
Allen also was convicted of 19 counts of simple burglary. Degruy was charged with the same offenses and pleaded guilty to those crimes.
Judge Steib, in accepting the plea agreement, sentenced Degruy to the maximum punishment for manslaughter, 40 years, and to two years for each of the 19 counts of simple burglary. Judge Steib ran the sentences concurrently and ordered that Degruy serve the punishment at hard labor without benefit of probation, parole or suspension of sentence.
Assistant District Attorneys Seth Shute and Rachel Africk prosecuted the cases.