A Crook County woman was sentenced to 6 years and two months in prison for killing her lover following years of reciprocal domestic violence.

Tina Marie Hill, 54, appeared Monday in Crook County Circuit Court having agreed to enter a guilty plea by Alford to one count of second-degree manslaughter. Alford pleas are treated as convictions, though defendants do not admit guilt.

On Nov. 23, 2017, she had two black eyes when investigators came to her property in Juniper Canyon to perform a welfare check. She directed them to Dennis Allen Stewart’s body in the entryway of their cabin and said he hadn’t moved in four days.

Hill was charged with murder, first-degree manslaughter and unlawful use of a weapon.

Investigators concluded Stewart, angered that Hill had nailed a blanket to the entrance of the cabin, had started cutting through the blanket with a knife. Hill picked up a nearby rifle in anticipation of an assault. The gun fired accidentally, striking Stewart, according to a statement from Crook County District Attorney Wade Whiting.

In the years prior to Stewart’s death, police were called to the property numerous times.

In 2016, Hill was granted a restraining order against Stewart for domestic violence. He was arrested five times for violating the order between November 2016 and August 2017.

Hill also has a history of violence against Stewart. In 2016, she was arrested for throwing bleach in his face. She was arrested again two weeks later after firing multiple shots from a handgun in his direction following a verbal dispute. Both cases were dismissed when Stewart declined to cooperate with investigators.

Hill has a prior domestic violence conviction in California for inflicting injury on a spouse.

— Reporter: 541-383-0325, gandrews@bendbulletin.com

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