Local News

Pair pleads guilty to beating elderly Robeson woman

Posted November 17, 2010 11:32 a.m. EST
Updated November 17, 2010 12:16 p.m. EST

— Two teenagers who nearly beat an 80-year-old Robeson County woman to death last year have been sentenced to at least 15 years in prison after pleading guilty to the crime, authorities said.

A Highway Patrol trooper found Lola Nye lying on the hallway floor in her Orrum home on Feb. 15, 2009, amid shattered glass and spattered blood. She suffered broken bones, deep cuts, major head trauma and lingering anxiety.

Montrexe Daytoria Blue, 17, of Orrum, and Quantrius Townsend, 15, of Whiteville, pleaded guilty Monday to attempted first-degree murder, breaking and entering, assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill, larceny of a motor vehicle and conspiracy to commit larceny.

Investigators said the teens beat Nye to steal her car. The state trooper found the vehicle abandoned in a swamp 3 miles from Nye's home, which prompted him to check on her.

Authorities arrested Blue and Townsend after seeing video from Orrum Middle School's surveillance camera, which is across the street from Nye's house.

Townsend was initially charged as a juvenile because he was 14 at the time of the crime, but his case was later transferred to Superior Court. That means he will serve his sentence in a youthful offender program in the adult prison system, officials said.

Superior Court Judge James Ammons sentenced Blue and Townsend to 15 to 19 years in prison for attempted murder and assault. He also handed down separate six- to eight-month sentences for breaking and entering and the larceny charges.

Nye has no recollection of the beating, according to her daughter, Ruth Ann Struble. She has been living with Struble in Raleigh since recovering from her injuries.