SANTA ROSA (BCN) – A Healdsburg woman was sentenced to 26 years to life in prison Tuesday morning for stabbing her boyfriend to death two years ago.
A Sonoma County Superior Court jury rejected Sheyna Douprea’s self-defense and battered women’s syndrome claim and convicted her of first-degree murder on Aug. 16.
Douprea, 25, claimed that 46-year-old Daniel Mooney was an abusive alcoholic and that she stabbed him in self-defense in their Healdsburg apartment on Dec. 14, 2008.
In a letter she submitted Tuesday morning to Judge Gary Medvigy, Douprea said, “I never would have reacted the way that I did if I hadn’t felt that my life, the mother of my daughters, was in danger.”
“I never could have planned this because I loved him and we were making plans to spend the rest of out life together,” Douprea wrote.
Deputy District Attorney Robert Waner said the letter was an example of another inconsistent statement of what occurred in the Mason Street apartment.
“This is the result of her unchecked serial fits of rage that resulted in a brutal murder,” Waner said.
Mooney’s 0.35 percent blood-alcohol level and the Benadryl in his system made him particularly vulnerable at the time of the slaying Waner said.
Prosecutors alleged during the trial that Douprea was angry she and Mooney were unable to attend a Christmas party because Mooney was drunk when she came home around noon the day of the murder.
Waner told the jury Douprea sat in her bedroom for about eight minutes before she stabbed Mooney four times in the left side of his neck as he sat on the edge of his bed.
Douprea has two previous domestic violence convictions, one in Sonoma County and one in Las Vegas, and she had assaulted three other men “multiple times” but was not charged, Waner said after the verdict was read.
Douprea’s attorney Jamie Thistlethwaite told the jury her client had made poor choices in men and was a victim of battered woman’s syndrome.
She said Douprea was “fighting for her life” when she punched and scratched Mooney as he straddled her before she used the 5-inch pocketknife with a 2-inch blade in self-defense.
One juror said the panel did not find Douprea credible because of inconsistent stories she gave to police.
When Medvigy sentenced Douprea to 25 years to life for the murder and one year for use of a knife, he said Mooney’s death was incredibly violent and the result of Douprea’s “uncontrollable rage.”
Medvigy said there was no sign of a struggle by Mooney and the stabbing wounds over his whole body constituted “a deliberate effort to end his life.”
“Mr. Mooney had a death sentence by a vigilante for being an alcoholic,” Medvigy said.