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East Texas woman sentenced to death for killing woman, cutting unborn baby from womb

Courtesy: McClatchy Co.

An East Texas woman was sentenced to death on Wednesday for killing a 21-year-old pregnant woman and cutting her unborn baby from her womb.

A Bowie County jury took over 90 minutes to reach the sentence against Taylor Parker, according to KTBS-TV in Shreveport, Louisiana. Jurors had found Parker, 29, guilty last month of capital murder in the killing of Reagan Hancock, 21, of New Boston, and her unborn baby, Braxlynn Sage.

Hancock was strangled, beaten, and repeatedly stabbed on Oct. 9, 2020, while her 3-year-old daughter was in the house, according to KETV-TV.

The baby was later pronounced dead at a local hospital after a Texas Department of Public Safety trooper pulled Parker over in De Kalb on the morning of the murder with the newborn in her lap, unresponsive.

After Parker was sentenced on Wednesday, victim impact statements were given by several of Hancock’s family members. Her husband, Homer Hancock, had an appointed person to read his impact statement.

“I’ll never get to hear my baby say, ‘I love you, Daddy,’” Homer Hancock said, according to KTBS-TV. “And anytime Kinley wants to see her mommy, we load up and go out to the gravesite.”

Parker’s defense attorneys had called several of Parker’s family members to the stand, including her aunt, who testified that she knew Parker had faked a pregnancy, according to the Bowie County Citizens Tribune.

Defense experts had testified that Parker was no longer a threat because the situation that led to the murders of Hancock and her baby would be “impossible to re-create” in prison.

KTBS-TV reported that the trial and sentencing phase lasted 49 days, including 25 days of testimony, 142 witnesses and over 100 pieces of evidence.