The woman suspected in a brutal November homicide was on probation at the time for stabbing her child’s father.
Michelle Marie Price, 39, was arrested Thursday on a charge of second-degree murder in the death of Linda Daley, 65.
Price was an acquaintance of Daley’s daughter, said Sgt. Chris Widmer, spokesman for the Tucson Police Department.
On Nov. 21, police responded to a check welfare call in the 1800 block of West Pueblo Vista Boulevard, just north of “A” Mountain. A neighbor checking on Daley found Daley lying in a pool of blood inside the home. Daley was pronounced dead at the scene. Two dogs also were killed.
When police searched Daley’s home on the day her body was discovered, they found a baseball bat, a handgun and a knife, but there is no indication in the search warrant whether the items belonged to the victim or the assailant.
During a search of a south-side motel room the next day, investigators obtained DNA swabs from Price and found prescription medication and “mental health paperwork,” according to the search warrant.
At the time of Daley’s murder, Price was on probation from a 2008 incident.
According to documents from that case, Price had been diagnosed with bipolar disorder in 2002, and later diagnosed as delusional and schizophrenic. She reportedly had auditory and visual hallucinations, and had been treated by at least five different mental-health facilities since 2004.
Price had stopped taking her medication before the stabbing, court records stated.
On the day of the stabbing, Price took her daughter to visit the child’s father but “the visit escalated and the defendant stabbed the victim in the chest resulting in a collapsed lung,” according to a Pretrial Services report.
After her arrest, Price told police she arrived at the victim’s home armed with a kitchen knife because she “wanted to kill him for mind manipulation and coercing her into loving him,” according to the presentencing report.
While in jail awaiting trial, Price was given her medication and a court-ordered psychiatric exam found her competent to stand trial.
Originally charged with attempted first-degree murder, Price pleaded guilty to two counts each of aggravated assault, serious physical injury and domestic violence. She was sentenced to the nine months she had already served in jail and five years probation. She also had to pay ,800 in restitution to the victim.
Price’s probation was twice extended for failing to pay restitution, which is why she was still on probation when she is accused of killing Daley.
On Dec. 2, a petition to revoke Price’s probation was filed in Pima County Superior Court. The petition was based on Price’s failure to notify the Adult Probation Department about a change of address, her failure to report to the department as required and her failure to take her prescribed medications as ordered.
Contact reporter Kimberly Matas at firstname.lastname@example.org or 573-4191.
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