Traverse City Record-Eagle

February 16, 2013

Pair sentenced in brutal killing of woman


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---- — PONTIAC (AP) — A man was sentenced to life in prison and his female accomplice was given at least 23 years Friday after being convicted of beating, kicking and fatally stabbing an 80-year-old suburban Detroit woman.

An Oakland County Circuit judge sentenced Alan Wood, 49, to life with no chance of parole. He was convicted last month of first-degree murder in the 2011 death of Nancy Dailey. Tonia Watson, 41, pleaded guilty last month to second-degree murder and testified against Wood in exchange for the reduced sentence of 23 years to 80 years in prison.

Wood interrupted Judge Colleen O'Brien, who said it was the worst murder case she has seen on the bench. He argued his rights were violated and evidence was mishandled.

"Please give me my sentence and stop preaching from the bench," he said.

Watson apologized to O'Brien, who doubted her contrition.

"You say you are sorry about what happened, but your actions afterwards don't show that," the judge said. "Why did you do it? To get your next fix of heroin. I believe you could have done something to stop the crime but I will honor the (plea) agreement."

Dailey was found tied up in her Royal Oak home in November 2011. Authorities say the parolees befriended Dailey and did yard work for her, then robbed her and slit her throat.

Police have said Dailey was beaten to force her to disclose her bank card PIN. Wood and Watson were arrested two days after the killing at a Meijer store in Wayne County's Canton Township. They were planning to leave the state that day, police said.

The case has prompted scrutiny of the Michigan Department of Corrections over supervision of parolees. Records show Wood's past convictions included home invasion, while Watson's convictions included gun and stolen property crimes. Both were paroled in 2010.