Crime

Parole recommended for 86-year-old Modesto woman

An 86-year-old Modesto woman has been found suitable for parole after more than 30 years in prison after being convicting in the 1985 murder of her husband, according to a news release issued Friday by the Stanislaus County district attorney’s office.

The release said Bonnie Sue Meyers was found suitable for parole Feb. 28 at a hearing of the State Board of Parole Hearings at the Central California Women’s Facility in Chowchilla. She was convicted in 1986 of second-degree murder. Prosecutors have said she repeatedly bludgeoned her husband, Don Meyers, in the head with a blunt object as he sat in a recliner in the couple’s Modesto home.

The decision by the parole board is subject to review by the governor’s office.

Prosecutors have said the motive appeared to be financial. Meyers told a former husband she had hoped to make “quick money” by marrying Don Meyers, according to Bee archives. They had been married seven months when Meyers killed him. She had changed his will to benefit her, according to the archives.

Deputy District Attorney Jeff Laugero argued for Meyers to remain incarcerated because of her “complete lack of remorse and failure to acknowledge her role in the crime,” according to the release. But the Board of Parole Hearings determined Meyers’ age, poor health and other factors outweighed her not taking responsibility for the crime.

The district attorney’s office also announced Friday that Modesto residents Ray Walters, 71, and Jonnie Dietzman, 55, were not found suitable for parole.

The news release said Walters was convicted of second-degree murder in the Nov. 17, 1991, shooting death of his neighbor, Randy Fernandes. Dietzman pleaded guilty to first-degree murder in 1994 for her role in a 1993 home-invasion robbery in Modesto. The victim was Jose Calderon.

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