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Teenager, 17, sentenced to at least 16 years in jail for killing disabled sister three years ago

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Teenager, 17, is sentenced to at least 16 years in jail for killing his disabled sister, 18, three years ago and leaving her body near a mobile home dumpster with a canvas belt still wrapped around her neck

  • On Tuesday Claude Henderson II, 17, was sentenced to 16 to 25 years in jail for murdering his 18-year-old disabled sister three years ago in North Carolina
  • On November 11, 2017, Henderson, then 14, killed his sister Kayla Dezaray Hensley, who had cerebral palsy and was deaf
  • Her body was found suffering lacerations to the neck with a canvas belt still wrapped around it near a dumpster in a mobile home park 
  • He confessed to the killing during an interview with police after attack  

By Marlene Lenthang For Dailymail.com

Published: | Updated:

A 17-year-old boy has been sentenced to at least 16 years in jail for murdering his disabled sister and dumping her body near a dumpster nearly three years ago.

Claude Henderson II, 17, of Reems Creek, North Carolina pleaded guilty on September 8 in Buncombe Superior Court to the second-degree murder of his sister Kayla Dezaray Hensley.

Henderson was just 14 when he killed his sister Hensley, 18, who had cerebral palsy and was deaf, on November 11, 2017.

In this grisly murder, Hensley’s body was found near a dumpster near a Weaverville mobile home park suffering several lacerations to the neck with a canvas belt wrapped around it.

On Tuesday Claude Henderson II, 17, was sentenced to 16 to 25 years in jail for murdering his 18-year-old disabled sister Kayla Dezaray Hensley (above) three years ago in North Carolina

In this grisly murder, Hensley’s body was found near a dumpster near a Weaverville mobile home park suffering several lacerations to the neck with a canvas belt wrapped around it

Police arrived to a mobile home park on Brinwood Drive in Weaverville around 10.42pm after an emergency call.

In interviews with officers, Henderson confessed to killing his sister.

Hensley was killed inside the family home, according to an investigation.

Deputies seized three knives, a box cutter and a belt found around Hensley’s neck.

Henderson was sentenced to 16 to 25 years in the North Carolina Department of Adult Corrections with credit for three years for time served since the horrific killing, according to the District Attorney’s release.

‘My heart goes out to Kayla’s mother Susan Maltry who has showed great emotional strength and grace in working with both investigators, court personnel and my office throughout this unspeakable tragedy. I wish her peace and healing,’ Buncombe District Attorney Todd Williams said in a press release.

Hensley had cerebral palsy and was deaf and had a job working at American Eagle

Hensley posted this picture to her Facebook in 2011, when she would have been 12 years old. Her mother, center, and what appears to be her brother, right, are also in the frame

Hensley shared this photo smiling on top of a turtle sculpture in September 2017

Henderson was charged with first-degree murder at the time of the killing.

That charge required the state to prove premeditation and deliberation beyond a reasonable doubt.

But a defense-initiated forensic psychiatric evaluation questioned whether he possessed the specific intent to premeditate and deliberate the murder due to his youth and immaturity and other diagnostic factors.

If convicted he could’ve been released on parole after 25 years because he was a juvenile.

He was eventually charged with second-degree murder, which does not require that proof. 

The killing took place in a mobile home park in Weaverville, North Carolina

According to Disability Memorial, Hensley worked at American Eagle where her co-workers remembered her as a ‘ray of sunshine’.  

At the time of Hensley’s death her heartbroken mother released a statement calling her a hero.

‘She was the best thing that ever happened to me and will be missed by so many,’ Susan Maltry said..

‘She is and will always be my hero. In 18 years she has [brought] me so much. Kayla was sunshine in every person she knew.

‘She has overcome many downfalls in life. She was born with CP and was told she would never walk, she walked. She was born deaf, and had cochlear implants and was able to hear. If anyone told her she couldn’t, she made sure to prove them wrong. She was an amazing girl! There’s nothing I could say to make people see how truly blessed I was to have her in my life. She was and always will be my hero,’ she said to WLOS

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