The Associated Press reports that Juanita Gomez, 51, of Oklahoma, has been sentenced to life in prison without parole for the murder of her daughter, 33-year-old Geneva Gomez. Juanita reportedly thought her daughter was possessed by the devil, and killed her by forcing a medallion and crucifix down her throat in 2016. Jurors who convicted her in January of the first-degree murder charge recommended the sentence to the judge.
Defense attorneys told reporters they plan to appeal the conviction.
Police responded to a call at Geneva Gomez’s home in August 2016 in Oklahoma City after her boyfriend found her body on the floor, covered in bruises and blood, says The Daily Mail. Her body was found with her arms spread wide and a crucifix on her chest. The boyfriend, Francisco Merlos, testified at the trial that when he asked Juanita why she didn’t get medical help for her daughter, she mumbled something about money and the devil, telling him she was possessed.
Juanita then put Merlos in a headlock when he tried to leave, but he freed himself and called 911.
According to court records, Juanita claimed her daughter was speaking in tongues and using a demonic voice before her death. She also stated Geneva’s eyes rolled back in her head and she threatened to kill Juanita the night before she was killed.
Juanita reportedly had several bruises on her arms and hands, and told police they were a result of Geneva trying to resist her attempts to free her body from the devil. She then shoved a crucifix down her daughter’s throat until blood came out of her mouth, says the Daily Mail.
Defense attorneys bailed on their original strategy to present an insanity defense after a psychologist deemed Juanita competent to stand trial and stated she was merely feigning a mental illness.
*Photo credit The Independent