XENIA, Ohio (WDTN) – A jury has found a Xenia woman guilty for stabbing a 19-year-old to death in 2018.
The Xenia Daily Gazette reports that Greene County jurors deliberated for two hours on April 24 before convicting Tova Wallace-Lee, 21, of murder and felonious assault.
She was sentenced Thursday to 15 years to life in prison.
Wallace-Lee is the first person in the county to claim self-defense in a murder trial since a law change went into effect in March. Until March 28, if a person claimed self-defense in the state, the burden was on them to prove it. With the new law, that responsibility now falls onto prosecutors.
She and the victim exchanged Facebook messages throughout the day on November 3, 2018, planning a physical fight that would happen that night.
She admitted to fatally stabbing Tre’Ana Tarver in the chest with a kitchen knife.
Prosecutors argued that Wallace-Lee eagerly set up the fight, left the safety of her home of her own free will with a weapon in her pocket, and did not try to prevent the fight from happening.
Wallace-Lee’s defense countered that she was only defending herself and should not be considered the villain in the case.