Texas mom gets 99 years for gluing toddler to wall, beating her
Elizabeth Escalona, 23, admitted gluing her 2-year-old daughter to a wall and beating her over potty training.
October 12th, 2012
02:23 PM ET

Texas mom gets 99 years for gluing toddler to wall, beating her

[Updated at 4:22 p.m. ET] A Texas mother who super-glued her 2-year-old daughter's hands to a wall and beat her over potty training problems was sentenced Friday morning to 99 years in prison, a Dallas County felony records department district clerk said.

Elizabeth Escalona, 23, will be eligible to ask for parole in 30 years. She pleaded guilty in July to a charge of first-degree injury to a child, a crime punishable by anywhere between probation and life in prison.

"This mom was pure evil, and her children are better off without her," prosecutor Eren Price said after a judge delivered Friday's sentence. "Her five kids now have a chance to lead a productive life."

Escalona’s attorney said that the sentence was excessive and that an appeal would be filed, CNN affiliate KTVT reported.

Escalona's daughter Jocelyn Cedillo was less than two months shy of her 3rd birthday in September 2011 when Escalona used a powerful adhesive to glue her hands to a wall and beat her because of potty training troubles, authorities said. Three other children belonging to Escalona, who was pregnant at the time, witnessed the abuse, according to Dallas County district attorney's office spokeswoman Debbie Denmon.

The child urinated on herself during the ordeal, during which she was hit in head and kicked in the groin, among other forms of abuse, Denmon said.

Oefelia Escalona, the defendant's mother, testified during her daughter's sentencing hearing this week that she found the girl and took her to a hospital. Once Jocelyn was there, medical authorities noticed severe bruises to her face and head, as well as a severe brain injury that led to her temporarily being in a coma.

At this week's sentencing hearing, prosecutors showed pictures of Jocelyn's hands and bruised body and forehead.

"The entire picture was very shocking," said Dr. Amy Barton, then a child abuse pediatrician at Children's Medical Center of Dallas, choking back tears on the stand on Monday. "I see a lot of children, and this was one of the most shocking cases that I have seen."

Escalona asked for leniency during her sentencing hearing this week, saying she behaved like a monster but deserved a second chance, KTVT reported. Her mother asked the judge to sentence Elizabeth to probation, according to KTVT.

Price initially offered a plea bargain of 45 years in prison, but Escalona turned it down, the district attorney's office said.

Price said that the judge, after learning more about Escalona during the hearing, was justified in sentencing her to more time.

"Elizabeth Escalona wasn't sorry for what she did to 2-year-old Jocelyn. Elizabeth Escalona felt sorry for herself," Price said. "Those tears on the stand were for her and not for the toddler she tortured."

An attempt to reach Escalona's attorney for comment Friday was not immediately successful.

Before this incident, Escalona had been investigated by Texas Child Protective Services but never arrested or charged, Denmon said.

The child welfare agency put all of her children in foster care after Jocelyn was taken to the hospital. All five of them, including Jocelyn, are now in the custody of their grandmother, Oefelia Escalona.

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Filed under: Courts • Crime • Justice • Texas
soundoff (2,261 Responses)
  1. KEVIN21261

    The public thinks that this type of child abuse by their care takers is unique. But is not. Most all profound child abuse cases are never prosecuted. Police and teachers refer all child abuse cases to CPS (child protection sevices). CPS is profoundly under-funded and under staffed and the police just dump these crimes on CPS without making arrests and CPS rarely refers these cases to prosecutors.

    October 13, 2012 at 5:18 am | Report abuse |
  2. Too many things like this

    99 years? I think she should be executed. We don't need to spend millions of dollars keeping her locked up like a zombie.

    It's way past time to put a stop to child abuse. Executing child abusers is just one step we need to take.

    Or we could put them in prison communities where they can work and live apart from children. Of course, they should be sterilized first if we are going to do that.

    Bottom line: Some people should not ever be allowed to have children or be around them at all. Period.

    October 13, 2012 at 5:20 am | Report abuse |
    • HistorianMInd

      what she did was totally wrong, but 99 years? She should be sent to treatment center, instead of 99 years in federal prison. The verdict is both harsh, unreasonable and cost unreasonably tax payers' money.

      What did Sandusky get for raping all these boys?

      October 13, 2012 at 5:36 am | Report abuse |
    • seraphim

      Punishment seems a little excessive especially when you figure nobody died. This happens all the time. Usually it's a man who does the beating though and around here even when they kill the child they don't get this sort of a sentence. Perhaps the fact that she's a woman has something to do with the sentence and, for that matter, the crazy attention this case is getting.This woman is not a threat to society. Sure, she shouldn't ever get her kids back nor should she have any more but she isn't a dangerous criminal. She should get a few years and probation. Keep in mind it costs more than some of us make in a year to keep these people in prison and a good three quarters of them aren't even dangerous to the public.

      October 13, 2012 at 5:41 am | Report abuse |
    • Dinindy

      No way that granny should have those kids. Pu them up for adoption! Remember granny raised the psycho who tortured her kid.

      October 13, 2012 at 5:44 am | Report abuse |
    • Geoff

      Execute child abusers? Terrible idea. You can't be that dumb to not see how this would likely play out. Why would someone stop at abuse if the death penalty is going to be considered. I tend to think that one would kill the child to prevent a witness. Penguins know this to be true.

      October 13, 2012 at 6:06 am | Report abuse |
  3. Eric

    If we had a Judge like her handling all the cases we would not have a problem in this country. People would actually fear the law instead of laugh at it.

    October 13, 2012 at 5:22 am | Report abuse |
    • averagesitizan

      On the contrary, the prison will be filled up 20 times of today population.

      The sentence was both too harsh and unreasonable.

      October 13, 2012 at 5:37 am | Report abuse |
  4. John

    It was due to the white male racists in this country, somehow her mind was reverted to a time before now: untill all civil rights are taken from white males and the playing field is set right, there will be no justice.

    October 13, 2012 at 5:23 am | Report abuse |
  5. KEVIN21261

    soundoff comment page sucks. I can't even find the comment I just posted. Will you guys please post most recent comments first!!!!!!!

    October 13, 2012 at 5:30 am | Report abuse |
  6. 99 years isnt enough

    No one should be defneding this lady. Yes there are worse crimes and they should get worse punishments. But should our systems base punishment on what someone else got. ie a child molester get 1 year in prison so she should get less? No a child molestor should receive a worse punishment but that doesnt excuse the fact that a judge finally set an example with this lady. We should be setting an example of all idiots who prey on the weak the young and the elderly. And instead of defending this lady you should be disgusted at what she did and leave it at that.

    October 13, 2012 at 5:32 am | Report abuse |
  7. Steven B.


    October 13, 2012 at 5:32 am | Report abuse |
  8. Chris

    So you can kill your kid, lie about her being missing, lie about everything else, then tosse her body in a swamp and get off, but I'm glad to see we draw the line somewere. Don't get me wrong what she did was horrible, but if she killed her shed of gotten off easier I guess? Just saying...

    October 13, 2012 at 5:34 am | Report abuse |
  9. joe

    Kids can do things to drive one crazy. But this is egregious, infuriating, and heartbreaking. The kid urinated on herself during the ordeal. What kind of hellish irony is that? I don't know what kind of past this tattooed abusive mother has had to drive her to doing something this evil, but you know that in the right hands, these kids would have a brighter future. Hopefully they will now.

    October 13, 2012 at 5:34 am | Report abuse |
  10. allenwoll

    As a practical matter, it makes little difference : This person can not be allowed loose again.

    However, she is obviously mentally ill and so should NOT find herself in a prison - BOTH for her safety and that of others around her.

    The SECOND part of the question is HOW did she get this way - Chance or abuse ? ? ?

    Societal revenge is pointless : PREVENTION is the key ! ! . Oh, but wait : We MUST have SMALL government ! ! !

    October 13, 2012 at 5:37 am | Report abuse |
  11. bebow

    Forget the concept of "toilet training." It's one of our deadly myths. Do we "train" our children to roll over, sit up, crawl, pull to a stand, walk, talk, and feed themselves? No, these things are considered developmental norms. Using the toilet is no different.

    Admit it, parents of the diaper-wearing brigade. You have not been to the bathroom without an audience since your children have mobilized. Those little eyeballs have been on you, relentlessly observing everything you do, and the little ears have been listening, while the little mouths have asked question after question.

    The point is that two-year-olds know very well where the toilet is located and what it is for. The key is a matter of readiness, which is two-headed beast. Your children must be physically capable of the task, but they also must be psychologically ready and willing. You must be patient, and wait for those stars to align.

    Don't get your tender parental egos involved. This isn't your show. Your job is to extend an invitation, wait, supervise, and applaud at the appropriate times.

    There is no "toilet training." There is only acceptance of your invitation. Don't push the RSVP.

    October 13, 2012 at 5:38 am | Report abuse |
  12. KyRunner

    another typical non-White, yet Whites get all the blame... go figure Hahaha

    October 13, 2012 at 5:40 am | Report abuse |
  13. bebow

    She got the lengthy stretch in prison, because she TORTURED the child.

    October 13, 2012 at 5:42 am | Report abuse |
  14. smch

    I don't get the punishment system. I know of a guy who actually beat his infant to death and only got 8 years, and didn't have to serve all of that even. This one beat the baby, who lived, and she got 99 years.

    October 13, 2012 at 5:46 am | Report abuse |
    • Rick

      Same here, could race played a factor? Is judge white? It is Texas BTW

      October 13, 2012 at 5:52 am | Report abuse |
  15. Rick

    I wonder If she was not a minority whether the punishment would have been less extreme.

    October 13, 2012 at 5:49 am | Report abuse |
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