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Brownsville woman’s sentence cut from 40 years to 5 years

A Brownsville woman who was serving up to 40 years in prison for the fatal stabbing of her boyfriend was sentenced Friday to serve up to five years in prison after her conviction on a lesser charge at a retrial.

Dayna M. McMaster, 37, was found guilty earlier this month of involuntary manslaughter in the June 26, 2009, stabbing of Clarence “Duke” Blair III.

Fayette County Senior Judge Gerald R. Solomon sentenced McMaster to serve 2 12 to five years in prison.

Following her second trial, defense attorney Dianne Zerega of Uniontown said McMaster has served much of that time, but she will have to wait to be paroled before she is released from state prison.

A jury in 2010 convicted McMaster of third-degree murder, and she was sentenced to 20 to 40 years in prison.

District Attorney Jack Heneks and Assistant District Attorney Anthony Iannamorelli were seeking another conviction of third-degree homicide.

Prosecutors said McMaster stabbed Blair, a tree-trimmer, in the heart while they were arguing on a gravel road near Cardale Elementary School in Redstone. Earlier in the evening, they had smoked crack cocaine.

McMaster drove Blair to Uniontown Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

She was granted a retrial in August 2013, when a panel of state Superior Court judges found her attorney did not call witnesses whose testimony might have bolstered her allegations of domestic abuse.

On Friday, Solomon ordered McMaster to be sent to the State Correctional Institution at Muncy.

She will be given credit for time served since June 28, 2009, according to the court order.


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