METAIRIE, LA (WVUE) - A Metairie woman entered a guilty plea Monday morning for her part in the death and dismemberment of French Quarter exotic dancer Jaren Lockhart.
Margaret Sanchez, 32, pleaded guilty to manslaughter, obstruction of justice and conspiracy to obstruct justice. Sanchez's trial was scheduled start July 11 on charges of second-degree murder, obstruction of justice and conspiracy to obstruct justice.
Lockhart was stabbed to death in a Kenner home four years ago and her body was thrown into the Gulf of Mexico by her two killers. Sanchez was sentenced to 40 years in prison.
The plea comes one year and one day after her ex-boyfriend Terry Speaks was convicted for his role in the same crime.
Lockhart, 22, a mother of a young child, died on June 6, 2012, after agreeing to leave her French Quarter job in the early morning hours with Sanchez and Speaks.
The trio went to the Kenner home that Sanchez and Speaks shared in the 2000 block of Connecticut Avenue, where Speaks and Sanchez killed Lockhart.
"After consulting with Ms. Lockhart's family, it was decided that the negotiated plea agreement was in the best interests of all parties involved," Jefferson Parish District Attorney Paul D. Connick, Jr., said. "Out of respect for Ms. Lockhart and her family, I will not comment further on the case or the evidence."
Members of Lockhart's family, along with numerous law enforcement officers from Kenner and Mississippi were present in the courtroom when Sanchez pleaded guilty.
"Words cannot express the pain her family and friends have endured since the murder," Donna Kulick, guardian of Ms. Lockhart's daughter, said in impact testimony.