San Joaquin County
District Attorney's Office
OFFICE OF THE DISTRICT ATTORNEY 222 E. Weber Ave., Room 202, Stockton, CA
P. O. Box 990, Stockton, CA 95201
T (209) 468-2400 | F (209) 465-0371
TORI VERBER SALAZAR District Attorney Scott A. Fichtner Assistant District Attorney Kristine M. Reed Assistant District Attorney James Bojko Chief Investigator
News from the Office of District Attorney Tori Verber Salazar
For Immediate Release
December 18, 2019
CONTACT: Angela Hayes, Deputy District Attorney
T: (209) 468-2400 | E: Angela.Hayes@sjcda.org

Man Sentenced For Strangling Mother of Six Children to Death

Stockton – Today, District Attorney Tori Verber Salazar announced that the Honorable Xapuri Villapudua of the San Joaquin County Superior Court, sentenced Clarence Bailey, age 44, to 15 years to life in state prison for the death of Shontelle Bonner on Monday, December 16, 2019. She was the mother of six children, two of whom are Mr. Bailey’s children as well.

“Domestic violence is and will remain a priority for this office to prosecute,” said District Attorney Tori Verber Salazar. “Too many San Joaquin County families are affected by this type of violence leaving in its wake a plethora of victims, particularly children who often lose both parents, one to death, and the other to prison. This creates a substantial burden on the families and communities who now have the responsibility to raise the children of domestic violence.”

According to court records, on September 2, 2017, Mr. Bailey called 911 at 3:30 p.m. stating, “something was wrong” with his children’s mother, Shontelle Bonner. When paramedics arrived, it was obvious that Ms. Bonner had been dead for quite a while. She sustained a large, swollen, black eye because of trauma. Mr. Bailey admitted to detectives that he had strangled Ms. Bonner to death the prior evening. An autopsy performed by forensic pathologist Dr. Susan Parson and an examination of the brain by renowned forensic pathologist, Dr. Bennet Omalu, revealed the cause of death to be asphyxiation by external compression of the neck.

Mr. Bailey had prior domestic violence history against Ms. Bonner, including prior acts of strangulation. He was actually on arrest warrant status at the time of the murder for misdemeanor domestic violence and child abuse charges, for strangling both the victim and her teenage daughter. He had been convicted in 2011 for a violation of Penal Code §273.5, a felony, against a previous girlfriend.

Shontelle Bonner is survived by a large extended family who appeared in court at the sentencing on Monday, including two of her six children. “There is an entire Family Crimes Unit devoted to these types of cases,” said District Attorney Tori Verber Salazar, “ I am deeply saddened by this family’s loss and I vow to commit all resources necessary not only to the prosecution, but ultimately to the prevention of domestic violence.”