SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. – A 31-year-old San Bernardino man was sentenced today to 16 years to life in state prison for the 2013 fatal beating and stabbing death of his estranged wife.
Last month, after deliberating for three days, a jury found Edly Atherley guilty of murder and found true the allegation that the defendant used a deadly and dangerous weapon in the slaying of 28-year-old Ashley Atherley.
Ashley Atherley’s body was found in the defendant’s apartment on Dec. 1, 2013, but he had fled the scene before police arrived.
On Jan. 18, investigators received a tip as to Atherley’s whereabouts. Shortly thereafter, Atherley surrendered to federal authorities in Florida and was later extradited to California to face murder charges. (Click here to read a full statement of facts released at the time of conviction.)
Prior to the pronouncement of judgment by Judge Harold T. Wilson, family members and friends read victim impact statements. The following Victim Impact Statement (excerpt) was read by Ashley’s father, Scott Hall:
“I'm not going to tell the court how badly this has impacted me because unfortunately I believe this will only bring Edly some sick sense of satisfaction. Who it has impacted though is … two innocent, beautiful girls who have lost their mother too soon. Unfortunately, as they grow up without their mother, their pain will be very real. It already has impacted them as they mourn over the loss of her night after night. They only have Edly, the individual that fathered them, to thank for the absence of their mother for the rest of their lives. Edly's actions directly deprived them of a mother's love tucking them in at night. Deprived them of a mother's love wiping the tears away when they're sad. Deprived them of a mother being there for them when no one else is. Deprived them of their mother cheering her little angels on as they venture into new hobbies and passions. Deprived them of a mother seeing them off for homecoming and prom. Deprived them of a mother's embrace when they graduate school and college. Deprived them of a mother to help them find and get fitted into that perfect wedding dress to marry the man of their dreams that everyone of us pray will be completely opposite of the horrible animal they were so unfortunate to call their father….”
The following is an excerpt of the Victim Impact Statement read by Ashley’s mother, Lucia Robles:
“…Because of Edly Atherley’s actions on that fatal night, my life and my family’s life have been forever changed! I will never forget that call on December 1, telling me that Ashley was found in Mr. Atherley’s apartment brutally murdered. I remember falling to my knees and just screaming! Within a few hours of receiving that call I had to get on a plane… and fly to California to identify my daughter. I had to identify Ashley by a tattoo on her back and a finger print card I had from when she was 8-years-old. I was told, due to her injuries, seeing her was not an option, so there were no last goodbyes or I love you! Edly Atherley left my daughter after he killed her with total disregard for her life and no respect for her death. Knowing she was alone after she died for over two days is disheartening and will forever haunt me.… Though nothing will ever bring my daughter Ashley back, I have to pray that if and when the time comes for any possible parole decision to be evaluated, that those making that determination will read this and feel the pain Edly Atherley has caused and they see what a monster he is. My hope and prayer is that he will never have the opportunity to live another day of his life outside of prison walls. The devastating impact he has made on our lives and the lives of two beautiful little girls will last a life time and so should his sentence!”
This case was prosecuted by Deputy District Attorney Melissa Monrreal and investigated by the San Bernardino Police Department.