Woodinville woman receives 10 years
by Jeff Switzer
Bernice Theresa Jones, 57, of Woodinville, has been sentenced to 10 1/4 years in prison in the shooting death of her husband Armstead U. Jones, 55, last September at their Woodinville home.
In mid-March, Jones pleaded guilty to second-degree murder, a reduced charge in exchange for the plea.
The crime carried with it a sentencing range of approximately 10 to 13 years, and prosecutors were recommending a 12-year sentence for Jones. King County Superior Court Judge Laura Inveen instead sentenced her to 10 years in jail. Had she been convicted of first-degree murder, Bernice Jones could have faced 20 to 26 years in prison.
The Jones's had lived for 10 years in their Woodinville home. Armstead Jones had just retired as an upper-level manager with the Boeing Company in June; Bernice volunteered in the community, was on the Friends of the Woodinville Library board, and was active in library bond campaigns.
However, police found a diary which told a story of a marriage that had been punctuated by anger, jealousy, and suspicion of adultery.
Jeffrey Cohen, Jones's lawyer, argued that Bernice Jones had been suffering from severe depression at the time she shot her husband. Prosecutors stated, however, that they had taken her mental condition into consideration when recommending the 12-year sentence.
"We're satisfied that the sentence is within the standard range," said Dan Donohoe, of the prosecutor's office.
While she is not eligible for parole, Jones can qualify for up to a 15-percent reduction in her sentence for good behavior.