Laveen Woman Gets Prison Time for Cleaning Up Blood and Lying to Cops After Deadly Beating

If someone's beaten to death in front of you, thrown in a garbage can, and dragged into the desert, do yourself a favor and let someone else clean up the blood.

A Laveen woman learning this the hard way after she was sentenced today to 14 months in prison after pleading guilty to misprision of felony for her involvement in thwarting a homicide investigation in 2008.

According to federal prosecutors, 23-year-old Samantha Barrera was present when her then-boyfriend, Anthony Trujillo, and her cousin, Deanna Breckenridge, beat a man to death in August 2008 and then left him for dead in the desert near the Gila River Indian Reservation.

Barrera never called police about the murder and, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office, she cleaned up a "substantial amount of the victim's blood." 

The murder occurred when Dane Peters -- a neighbor of the suspects -- showed up uninvited at Breckenridge's home while she was sleeping. According to the suspects, this startled them, so they beat him to death.

After the bloody beating, the two crammed Peters' body into a garbage can and dragged him out into the desert, where he was discovered, dead, several weeks later.

After the body was discovered, prosecutors say, Barrera lied to FBI agents about what had taken place and stalled the investigation.

U.S. District Judge Mary H. Murguia had some harsh words for Barrera at sentencing, telling her -- among other things --  "You literally have the blood on your hands from cleaning up what had occurred."

Breckenridge and Trujillo were tried separately, where each pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter and sentenced to 10 years in prison. 

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James King
Contact: James King