Sharlene Pence relieved son's murderer was denied final appeal - WECT TV6-WECT.com:News, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

Sharlene Pence relieved son's murderer was denied final appeal

Danny Pence Danny Pence
Danny Pence Danny Pence
Sharlene Pence Sharlene Pence
Todd Boggess Todd Boggess

By Jon Evans - bio|email
Posted by Debra Worley - email

WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH, NC (WECT) - In August 1995, 17-year-old Danny Pence was murdered.  He was kidnapped from Wrightsville Beach and his body was discovered in Durham.

In 1997, two years later, Todd Boggess was found guilty of murder and was sentenced to death.

The State Court of Appeals discovered there were procedural errors in the trial, so Boggess was granted a new trial in 2007.  Once again, he was found guilty and sentenced to life in prison. 

Tuesday, Sept. 22, 2009, the North Carolina Supreme Court denied Boggess' final appeal for a new trial.

Danny's mother, Sharlene Pence, said she is relieved the Attorney General's office said Boggess' chances for direct appeals have come to an end.

"I've waited 14 years for this," said Sharlene.

This means any other appeals made by Boggess would be long shots at best. It means he will likely spend the rest of his life in prison, for the brutal murder of Sharlene's oldest son Danny back in 1995.

It likely means no more trials for this mom to endure.

"I don't have to go back and sit in a courtroom, and listen to the brutal murder and details all over again," said Sharlene. "That's one of the reasons we didn't seek the death penalty, so I would not have to go through this again in 10 years."

Sharlene sat through two trials, and countless other legal appearances for Boggess and his accomplice.

She fought the battle 14 years for her son, and while the news does bring a certain relief, it does not end the hurting.

"No, there is no closure," said Sharlene.  "You learn to live with the loss of a child, you have to, and there is no closure for that."

Sharlene has moved forward, attending homicide support groups and becoming an advocate for families of crime victims, helping those who suffer the same pain.

"Unfortunately this is one purpose God has had for me, to show other moms and dads that have lost children to murder that you can survive," said Sharlene. "It's not easy, but with faith in God you will survive."

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