By Diana Hefley Herald Writer
EVERETT — A Marysville woman didn’t wield the knife used to kill an 82-year-old man but she is headed to prison for her role in setting him up.
Delaney Henry lived in the same Marysville mobile home park as Arthur Schroeder and helped him with chores here and there. She taught convicted felon Robert Kennedy the unique knock that would have made Schroeder believe that his neighbor was at the door on Jan. 24, 2013, court papers said. Henry also knew that Schroeder was relatively well-off and kept cash around the house.
“Mr. Schroeder died as a direct result of Ms. Henry’s actions, even if she did not stab him,” Snohomish County deputy prosecutor Andrew Alsdorf wrote in court papers.
Henry was sentenced Thursday to 14 years in prison. She pleaded guilty in January to second-degree murder while armed with a knife under the theory that she was an accomplice to the killing.
Prosecutors allege that Kennedy repeatedly stabbed Schroeder during a methamphetamine-fueled robbery. If he is convicted, Kennedy faces a mandatory life sentence under the state’s persistent offender law. He has prior robbery convictions and a murder conviction would be his third strike. Kennedy’s trial is scheduled for later this year.
On Thursday, Henry, 29, apologized to Schroeder’s family. She also said she’ll regret the time she’ll lose with her two sons, ages 10 and 5.
The slain man’s daughter extended her forgiveness to Henry.
“I forgive her. I don’t forget. I hope every single day in prison she will remember what she did,” the woman said Thursday.
Her youngest son found Schroeder’s battered body lying in his travel trailer. The elderly man had been stabbed four times and his throat had been sliced. His trailer was ransacked. His wallet, jewelry box and pickup truck were missing.
In the hours after the murder, Henry told people that she was responsible for stabbing Schroeder. She also alleged that he had sexually assaulted her and the murder was revenge for the attack. Schroeder was a registered sex offender.
Later, Henry told detectives that she never was sexually assaulted by her neighbor. She also told them that she wasn’t in the trailer when Schroeder was killed. She waited outside as a look out. Two polygraphs concluded that she was telling the truth, court papers said.
Henry did help loot the trailer after the killing.
Snohomish County Superior Court Judge Linda Krese said that Henry deserved more than a low-end prison sentence given that she was responsible for setting up the robbery of an elderly man.
“There are consequences for one’s decisions to be involved in criminal activity,” Krese said.
Diana Hefley: 425-339-3463, firstname.lastname@example.org.