WATERFORD -- A judge this morning sentenced a 24-year-old man to 17 years to life in prison for beating to death his 65-year-old father after the two were involved in a fight at their Waterford home nearly three years ago.
A jury on Aug. 31 found Jose Eusebio Corona guilty of second-degree murder in the death of his father, Tomas Botello Corona. The jurors also convicted Corona of battery causing serious bodily injury.
Stanislaus County Superior Court Judge John Freeland sentenced Corona to 15 years to life in prison for the murder charge and two years in prison for the battery charge. The judge said Corona will remain on parole for the rest of his life if he qualifies for parole.
Its unclear what led to the dispute between the two men on Jan. 11, 2010. Prosecutors said investigators learned that Corona became angry with his father for some reason.
Sheriffs officials have said the fight began about 6:30 p.m. in the front portion of their house in the 500 block of Stein Way. It ended minutes later.
Deputies arrived and found the father lying unconscious in the driveway and Corona detained by neighbors across the street.
Prosecutors said investigators found the fathers DNA on the flat part of a garden hoe blade, but the defendant never admitted to using it as a weapon. Corona testified that he hit, kicked and stomped on his father in the kitchen and the driveway.
The father suffered a broken nose, along with hemorrhages on the top and back of his head and on his left and right temples, according to prosecutors. The cause of death was blunt force injuries.
Coronas mother was in a back room of the house when she heard the commotion and ran out of the home to ask neighbors to call 911, according to sheriffs officials. The two men were fighting before she figured out what was going on.