HENRICO COUNTY, Va. — Three adults convicted in the murder of three-year–old Zyon Thompson were sentenced Thursday to prison time ranging from 22 years to 32 years.
Clarence Raiford Jr., the primary abuser according to prosecutors, was sentenced to 32 years in prison, the longest of the three.
Raiford’s wife Alexis Raiford was sentenced to a total of 27 years, and William Corey Moore was sentenced to a total of 22 years.
Zyon lived with Clarence Raiford Jr and Alexis Raiford at their Oakleys Lane apartment, where the boy’s mother had left him for three weeks.
Raiford, and the two men, were left responsible for Zyon while the child’s mother went to work.
Prosecutors said while in their care, Zyon was waterboarded, forced to eat crab seasoning and had been subjected to other abuse, including torture and beatings.
An autopsy showed Zyon died of dehydration.
In a jailhouse interview, shortly after her arrest, Raiford said she did not hurt Zyon. She said he got into the crab seasoning by accident.
Raiford Jr. received 20 years for murder, five years for one count of felony child abuse causing serious injury and seven years for a second child abuse charge.
He pleaded guilty to the felony child abuse charges in December. He entered an Alford plea to felony murder.
Alexis Raiford received 20 years for murder, and seven years for child abuse charges in the death of Zyon. In June, she also entered an Alford Plea to both charges.
An Alford Plea means the defendant understands there is enough evidence to convict them of the particular crime, but does not admit guilt.
Moore was sentenced to 12 years for felony murder and 10 years for child abuse causing serious injury.
He was convicted of the charges after pleading guilty in December.