Woman gets 10 years for role in Newton County death

Jodie Self mug shot courtesy of Newton County Jail.
Jodie Self mug shot courtesy of Newton County Jail.

By Holley Nees - email

NEWTON, TX (KTRE) - A woman accused in the death of a man in Newton County agreed to a 10-year prison sentence Thursday morning in district court.

Jodie Self pleaded guilty to a charge of hindering apprehension. In exchange for the guilty plea, the Newton County District Attorney's Office dropped the charge of capital murder of Byron Land.

"I know that there's no justice and nothing can bring Byron back to me," Land's mother, Debra Land, said. "But, at the end of the day, when you don't have answers to all your questions, you feel like the system has failed."

A secretary of District Attorney Misti Spacek said Spacek was unavailable for comment and would not even divulge when Self would be eligible for parole. But Land's family says they've been told Self could be eligible for parole in five years or less since she gets credit for time served.

Debra Land declined to give a victim's impact statement.

"They've lost a loved one and have to go through it again, I think they're not saying anything today said a lot," District Judge Gary Gatlin said.

"As hard as it may seem, I have to forgive her in order for God to look over me and take care of me for the rest of my days," Debra Land said.

"My hope for Jodie is that one day, in her lifetime, is that somehow within the system, while she's there that she can get the help that she needs."

Brandon Lee Nichols had previously agreed to a 40-year prison sentence for his role in Land's death. Prosecutors dropped his capital murder charge.

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