Crime

She sexually abused kids with her boyfriend, then confessed. Now she's been sentenced.

A woman who told a counselor she'd helped her boyfriend sexually abuse children in Pierce County has been sentenced.

As part of negotiations with prosecutors, Kierra Marie Hall, 27, pleaded guilty to two counts of first-degree child molestation.

On Friday, Superior Court Judge Garold Johnson gave her 10 and 1/2 years to life behind bars, which means the state's Indeterminate Sentence Review Board will decide when or if she is released.

Deputy prosecutors Erica Eggertsen and Lori Kooiman wrote the court that Hall testified against her boyfriend, Shawn Morgan, and took responsibility for her actions by pleading guilty to sex crimes against four victims under 12 between 2009 and 2015.

Morgan was convicted, and sentenced last month to at least 60 years in prison.

The couple earned the trust of the children's parents, who they knew, and exploited that trust to isolate and abuse the minors, charging papers said.

Defense attorney Kent Underwood wrote in his sentencing memorandum to the judge that Hall was addicted to heroin when she began dating Morgan, and that he supplied her with drugs.

She tried to quit heroin multiple times, Underwood wrote, and it was while she was in rehab in 2015 that she told a counselor what she and Morgan had done.

Hall knew she could be charged with a crime because the counselor was obligated to report the information, the attorney said.

"Kierra's background is rife with sexual, physical and psychological abuse and neglect, which lead to drug addiction and a feeling of helplessness," Underwood wrote.

Hall wrote the court: "I am so ashamed that I was not mentally strong enough to come forward sooner and speak out. I myself was a victim of Shawn and things happened beyond my control, but that does not excuse my behaviors."

Alexis Krell: 253-597-8268, @amkrell
  Comments