Woman sentenced in Rapid City for covering up grandson’s murder
RAPID CITY, S.D. — Through tearful testimony in a Rapid City courtroom Tuesday afternoon, the grandmother of two-year-old Kylen Shangreaux learned her sentence for her involvement in covering up the murder.
Sonya Dubray, 51, was sentenced to nine and a half years in federal custody. In a plea agreement filed last October, Dubray accepted guilt tied to accessory to second-degree murder, a charge that carries a maximum 15 year sentence.
Court guidelines recommended a sentence between roughly five and seven years but U.S. prosecutors requested the nine and a half year sentence be considered.
Her original charge of accessory to first-degree murder, tampering with evidence failing to report a felony, and making a false statement were dropped as part of the plea agreement.
Dubray’s daughter, 31-year-old Katrina Shangreaux, was sentenced in July 2018 to 40 years in federal prison for killing her son in July 2016.
Chief Judge Jeffrey Viken said in court prior to testimony from family members and friends, “there is suffering everywhere we look in this case.”
Suffering evidenced in how Kylen died – kicked, beaten, and bit to death by his mother for wetting his bed. Court documents state Shangreaux come home to her home in Porcupine “after apparently consuming excessive amounts of alcohol.”
After Shangreaux killed her son, she and Dubray changed Kylen’s clothes and cleaned up the scene, calling for emergency responders once they were done. Dubray later gave Shangreaux a cell phone and took Kylen’s clothes, covered in blood, to Nebraska to be washed.
Dubray admitted to making false statements to federal law enforcement early in the investigation to help her daughter avoid arrest.
Kylen spent 58 days in his mother’s care before his death. Prior to returning to his mother, Kylen was in the custody of his paternal aunt, Angie Shangreaux.
Many spoke on behalf of Dubray and Kylen. Dubray’s immediate family pleaded for a shorter sentence to allow her to get back to being close to family. Shangreaux’s spoke for Kylen, noting the effects still felt today from his death.
“We’re never going to see him again no matter how hard we prayed,” said Angie. She continued to say her family is still in counseling because of what happened. She continued to question how Dubray didn’t hear Kylen’s cries that night. “Kylen’s cries fell on deaf ears,” Angie said.
Dubray spoke before the court to say she was sorry “for all the pain it’s caused on both sides of the family.” She asked Viken to consider a shorter sentence for her to help with family.
The defense claims Dubray was uncertain of when Kylen died and because a majority of his injuries were internal, she wasn’t aware of the full extent of his injuries.
Viken stated it was impossible “to not know the horrific actions” that took place. He went on to say before handing down the sentence, it was clear Dubray made a choice to try to protect Shangreaux. “Clearly this child has been murdered,” said Viken.
Dubray was taken into custody immediately following the hearing.