Thomas W. (T.J.) Liles Jr., 22, was sentenced to five years probation by visiting Judge Paul Banner after a Wood County jury of eight women and four men convicted him of tampering with physical evidence, a third-degree felony Sept. 26.
If Liles violates his probation, he will serve 10 years in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice. He also was fined $1,000.
Liles was charged with the offense of concealing drug paraphernalia by throwing it in a dumpster at the Dogwood Villa Apartments in Quitman after the start of an investigation into the deaths of two children there, according to a news release from the Wood County District Attorney’s Office. According to the charges, Liles threw away a drawer with a bong, pipe and grinder into the dumpster.
Liles was the live-in boyfriend of Daphne McDaniels, who was convicted of two counts of injury to a child and received two 40-year prison sentences. McDaniels is serving those sentences in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice. McDaniels’ daughters, 3-year-old Gabriella Guerrero and 1-year-old Natalye Price, were found murdered in their apartment in July 2014.
Special Prosecutor Tom Burton tried the case in the 402nd District Courtroom. Burton called Wood County Sheriff’s Department Dispatcher Monica Bailey, Quitman Police Lieutenant John Farmer, Texas Ranger John Vance and former Heritage Nursing Home employee Linda Ellis to the stand during the trial. Defense Attorney Doug Parks called no witnesses and Liles did not testify.
Liles has also been charged with two counts of injury to a child and failure to seek medical attention. Those cases are currently pending. According to an autopsy report examiners found more than 30 cuts and bruises on the girls’ heads and bodies as well as internal bleeding and damaged organs.