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. David

    99 years... really?
    She deserves it, but since when does anyone get 99 years for anything?
    Maybe it's a Texas thing.

    I guess I'm just used to seeing people get a slap on the wrist.
    Perhaps that's a Canada thing.

    The guy in Norway murdered 77 children and got 21 years in prison.
    That must be a norway thing:-)

    October 13, 2012 at 11:32 am | Report abuse |
  2. Horrid

    Why so much violence against children in this so-called "Land of Opportunity?"

    October 13, 2012 at 11:35 am | Report abuse |
  3. Ann Tallis

    This woman deserves a lengthy prison sentence. She is clearly mentally ill but knew what she was doing. Yes, it's awful that at 23 she has 5 children and like some others I am fearful of her mother raising these children. They already are special needs children from how they lived and what they witnessed. The chances of any of these children leading "normal" lives are quite low. I pray for them.

    October 13, 2012 at 11:36 am | Report abuse |
  4. danster101

    In other news, Texas will be handing out billion-year sentences for not properly parking your car.

    October 13, 2012 at 11:38 am | Report abuse |
    • Darwin

      Appears danster101 is OK with what she did. Probably a child molester himself.

      October 13, 2012 at 11:46 am | Report abuse |
    • danster101

      I reported you to the FBI,

      October 13, 2012 at 11:51 am | Report abuse |
    • johnymac60

      danster, that is idiotic. You have completely missed the point.

      October 13, 2012 at 11:56 am | Report abuse |
    • johnymac60

      apologies, danster, my comment was directed at Darwin, not yourself...

      October 13, 2012 at 11:57 am | Report abuse |
    • Melissa

      Really! I have an idea..... lets super glue your hands to a wall and I will have all three of my little ones kick you in the head till your in a coma....

      October 13, 2012 at 12:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • Melissa

      danaster, I understand what your saying but....... if I were the judge, I would have given her life without the possibility of parole, I have three children, one who is disabled and he wasnt the hardest to potty train. My middle who is 4 still has issues, I have no remorse for child beaters, none and things like this upset me to know end. I understand your joke but....

      October 13, 2012 at 12:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • Visara

      You're not too bright, are you kid? When you grow up and have children of your own, I'd like to see your reaction if someone were to glue their hands to a wall and beat them so badly, they require a hospital stay. Imbecile.

      October 13, 2012 at 12:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • sebastian

      These types of people need to be dealt with harshly so that maybe, just maybe, the next piece of trash that thinks about doing something remembers this conviction and stops themselves. My only complaint is that I wish this prison was located on a deserted island that didn't require my tax money to maintain.

      October 13, 2012 at 12:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • sebastian

      Is clicking "report abuse" on danster ok?

      Because it feels natural.

      October 13, 2012 at 12:17 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Adam

    30 years for beating a child is excessive when one considers that a man recently received a lesser sentence for stabbing and molesting a young child. Clearly our justice system is not perfect, nor will it ever be perfect...but I would like to see it be more balanced and consistent.

    Someone referenced nature v.s. nurture, with regard to the mother's state of mind; was she abused when she was young? Where did she learn this behavior? Clearly, nobody in a healthy state of mind is going to do what this mother did to her child. She's mentally ill. Does this excuse what she did? Not knowing the severity of her illness, I cannot say.

    What she did was appalling, but our society should focus upon rehabilitating criminals while punishing them for their crimes. The percentage of people released from prison who re-offend in this country illustrates this point. Many do not want to show mercy and provide developmental programs to incarcerated people...but with that type of justice, you're only perpetuating criminal behavior.

    October 13, 2012 at 11:38 am | Report abuse |
  6. Mikey

    She probably would have gotten less time if she had murdered the child...but then again, this is Texas we're talking about, so she would have gotten the death penalty there.

    October 13, 2012 at 11:38 am | Report abuse |
  7. John

    That's ridiculous 99 years. Anders Behring Breivik will be out before her and he killed 77.
    I think the court needs to use some common sense. This woman needs councelling not a life sentence.

    October 13, 2012 at 11:43 am | Report abuse |
    • Elbonian

      Its debatable whether this woman will get out before Anders Behring Breivik. Depending upon how she acts in prison, she could easily be released when she first comes up for parole after 30 years. As for Breivik, Wikipedia says he may never get out, but its up to the Norwegian equivalent of his parole board: "He was sentenced to preventive detention, a special form of prison sentence, with a term of 21 years and a minimum of 10 years, with the possibility of extension for as long as he is deemed a danger to society; the media have noted that he is unlikely to be released until much later than 21 years, and will probably remain in prison for life."

      October 13, 2012 at 12:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • Visara

      All that means is Breivik's sentence was too light. It doesn't mean this woman's sentence is too harsh because it's not. It's actually too lenient. People who hurt or molest children should get the death penalty.

      October 13, 2012 at 12:16 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Deb Ed

    There is no excuse for ever battering a child or putting one through what this baby girl has been through. I wish states would sever parents legal rights to children that have gone through such pain. My ex husband was a physically and mentally abusive man. I took beatings so that my child wouldn't get them. Didn't take me long to get out of that marriage. No child deserves to live like this poor child did.

    October 13, 2012 at 11:44 am | Report abuse |
  9. John

    Good! looks feelingless to me with a temper.

    October 13, 2012 at 11:51 am | Report abuse |
    • David Turner

      Your comment says more about you than any picture ever could my friend. I bet that girl in the picture you just commented on might say something similar. It's so easy to judge other people isn't it.

      October 13, 2012 at 12:02 pm | Report abuse |
  10. johnymac60

    There ar a lot of comments on this story, so I'm sure I'm covering old ground...but I'm amazed at this sentence. We have sentencing guidelines to balance crime and punishment. Otherwise the punishments are ineffective for "lesser" crimes and a criminal, knowing they will not suffer additional punishment – is actively encouraged to commit more and worse crime. For example, if you are the next child abuser, why not shoot at the cops when they come to get you? You already will probably get 99 years, so what do you have to lose? ..and if you shoot the good guys, you might get away. This is a heinous crime, but the judge has invalidated any common sense application of sentencing. It will be interesting to see the fall-out from this event.

    October 13, 2012 at 11:54 am | Report abuse |
  11. Joe

    This is why stupid people should not be reproducing. They do not raise their children properly and end up creating more problems for our society. I hope this woman rots in prison for the rest of her life.

    October 13, 2012 at 11:57 am | Report abuse |
  12. Jeff Frank (R-Ohio) "Right Wing Insanity"

    Send her across the border with a tatoo on her forehead..."Numero Uno Momosa"

    October 13, 2012 at 12:00 pm | Report abuse |
  13. alicia

    I truly hope she gets what she deserves in prison. I hope she knows what its like to feel helpless at the hands of others. that poor little girl, some people should be sterile and never aloud to have children.

    October 13, 2012 at 12:05 pm | Report abuse |
  14. think twice

    put her in the basement with that picture of her child in the hospital on the wall...she didn't deserve to be a mother.

    October 13, 2012 at 12:07 pm | Report abuse |
  15. billybob snaketail

    Longer sentence that Jerry Sandusky

    October 13, 2012 at 12:12 pm | Report abuse |
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