Houston Woman Sentenced to 30 Years for Murdering Own Mother

Houston Woman Sentenced to 30 Years for Murdering Own Mother
Ericka Nicole McDonald

A Houston woman has been sentenced to 30 years in prison after pleading guilty to the murder of her own mother in 2021. Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg announced the sentencing on Thursday.

Ericka Nicole McDonald, 31, admitted to the murder and received a 30-year prison term for the killing of her 51-year-old mother, Terri Mendoza. The tragic incident occurred at Mendoza’s apartment on Willow Place Drive in northwest Houston on August 16, 2021.

McDonald, who was residing with other family members in a nearby apartment, broke into her mother’s residence by wearing a mask and black clothing and entering through a window. She then fatally stabbed her mother. After the gruesome act, McDonald left the scene, changed her clothes, and returned moments later, pretending to be unaware of the incident. However, an eyewitness was able to identify McDonald as the intruder, even with the mask on. Subsequently, the Houston Police Department arrested McDonald.

As part of her sentencing, McDonald will not be allowed to appeal the conviction or the punishment. She must serve at least half of the 30-year prison sentence before becoming eligible for parole.

The prosecution was handled by Assistant District Attorney Casey Smith, a chief in the DA’s Homicide Division, who emphasized the importance of securing justice in this case and ensuring that the defendant would face the consequences for her actions without the possibility of appeal.