5 Defendants Sentenced to Prison for Involvement in Murder of Ft. Defiance Man
PHOENIX – This week, U.S. District Judge David G. Campbell sentenced Loren Wauneka, 37, of Fort Defiance, Ariz., to 137 months’ imprisonment followed by five years of supervised release for voluntary manslaughter, and Lisa Benally, 39 of Fort Defiance, Ariz., to 97 months’ imprisonment followed by three years of supervised release for accessory-after-the-fact. Judge Campbell also sentenced three additional co-defendants; Cameron Jones, 34, of Wide Ruins, Ariz., Eric Cornfield, 27 of Fort Defiance, Ariz., and Mick Hubbard, 27, of Ganado, Ariz. to terms of imprisonment ranging from 27 months to 60 months for their involvement in the murder.
On Jan. 19, 2016, during an argument and physical fight with the victim, Wauneka assaulted and killed the victim by striking him with a bat. After the murder, Benally, Jones, and Cornfield helped clean up the victim’s blood and assisted with rolling the victim’s body in a rug to conceal the murder. Knowing that Wauneka killed the victim, Hubbard, Jones, Benally, and Cornfield failed to notify law enforcement.
The victim died of blunt force injuries. The victim and all defendants are enrolled members of the Navajo Nation.
The investigation in this case was conducted by the Navajo Nation Police Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigations. The prosecution was handled by Kiyoko Patterson, Assistant U.S. Attorney, District of Arizona, Phoenix.
CASE NUMBER: CR-17-8093-PCT-DGC
RELEASE NUMBER: 2018-152_Wauneka et. al.
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