Mother jailed 20 years for leaving daughter to die in desert
An Arizona woman who left her 17-month-old daughter to die in the desert was sentenced on Monday (Jul 31) to 20 years in jail.
Ashley Denise Attson, 23, put the toddler in a stroller in September 2016 and left her for four days and nights in the desert, the US Attorney’s Office for Arizona said in a statement on Tuesday.
“Over the next few days, she met friends for ice cream and posted pictures of herself on Facebook. When she returned, the child was dead,” the statement read.
“Two days after finding her deceased child, Attson returned for the body, put it into a trash bag and buried it in an animal hole.”
The act was an “intentional, cold-hearted, horrendous killing of an innocent child,” said US District Judge David Campbell on reading Attson’s 20-year sentence, which would be followed by five years of mandatory parole.
Attson, who had pleaded guilty to second-degree murder, is a member of the Navajo Nation, the United States’ biggest American-Indian reservation. The maximum charge that she could have received for the guilty plea was life imprisonment.
No information was given on the motive for the killing.
The child was born with methamphetamine in her system and had been in the custody of tribal social services throughout most of her life before Attson regained custody about two months before the murder, the statement added. (ChannelNewsAsia)