Mother accused of putting newborn in trash can in Miami Twp. sentenced to prison

Jessica Taylor

Credit: Montgomery County Jail

Credit: Montgomery County Jail

A mother accused of putting a newborn baby in a trash can after giving birth in a Miami Twp. home was sentenced Tuesday to four years in prison.

Jessica Taylor, 40, appeared in court after entering an Alford plea to attempted murder and guilty pleas to two counts of felonious assault and endangering children. She is accused of trying to kill her newborn baby by tying him in a trash bag in February 2019. She faced a maximum sentence of five years in prison.

Montgomery County Common Pleas Judge Mary Wiseman sentenced Taylor and also said she would have to serve five years of supervised control after her release from prison.

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In a written statement read by her attorney, Taylor assured the court that she loved her child and didn’t remember what took place when the baby was born.

The state and the defense both filed sentencing memorandums ahead of the court hearing. The state asked the court to sentence her to the maximum sentence, while the defense requested that she either be put in intensive probation with inpatient treatment or be sentenced to a minimum of three years in prison.

The defense said in the court document that Taylor struggled to maintain income and often bounced place-to-place after a divorce, began a relationship with a drug dealer who used her as a “drug tester” and in the fall of 2018 became pregnant. The court document said because of prior surgery, she often felt excruciating pain in her lower midsection, so she doubted she was pregnant but confirmed that she was by going to the Women’s Center with a friend.

“A few weeks later Jessica had severe bleeding for a few days. She fully believed she had miscarried" the defense memorandum says. “She did not follow up with the Women’s Center because she had no insurance and was struggling to survive on her own. In retrospect, she deeply regrets that decision.”

ExploreAttempted murder case: Woman accused of tying up newborn in trash bag in Miami Twp. in jail

The memorandum says from early winter through Feb. 14, 2019, Taylor experienced menstrual cycles but on Feb. 14 she experienced excruciating pain at home.

“She went to the bathroom where she began bleeding profusely," the defense memorandum said. "The baby came out of her body onto a cold floor full of blood. Due to the loss of blood, Jessica was very incoherent and was unable to properly process what was going on. She had delivered a baby she thought she had miscarried, and she had never experienced labor inasmuch that her two boys were delivered via C-section. Because she was cold from the blood loss, she figured the baby was experiencing this as well, so she put him in the nearest thing on the floor - a trash bag.”

“There were no towels or blankets in reach on the floor. The trash bag was used to warm the child,” the defense memorandum says.

The defense memorandum said the baby was adopted by family friends and is now happy and healthy.

However, the state argued in its memorandum that Taylor’s actions “against a defenseless newborn are reprehensible and warrant the maximum term available under the agreement.”

“She never once sought prenatal care," the state said in the court document. “Instead, she continued to use drugs and hide her pregnancy.”

The state said at around 4 p.m. Feb. 14, 2019, her son heard her screaming in pain and saw that she was bloody and nude from the waist down in the bathroom. Despite the fact that she was in obvious need of medical care, she never asked for an ambulance or for her son to call 911.

“Instead she asked for her cigarettes and her cellphone,” the state memorandum says. “She asked for towels and a garbage bag.”

The state said that she went to lengths to hide that she had given birth. When she spoke to a family friend on the phone, she withheld details, she cut the umbilical cord and flushed the placenta, the state said.

“And she hid ‘the evidence’ in a plastic bag that she tied shut,” the state memorandum said. “When first responders arrived and asked her what had happened: if she was pregnant, if she had given birth — she lied. Twice. It was only when they heard his faint cry that the infant was recovered.”

The state said the baby was born six weeks premature and tested positive for amphetamines. The state said if first responders didn’t find the baby as soon as they did, he would not have survived.

“Defendant’s callous and selfish actions very nearly cost the life of a defenseless baby,” the memorandum says.

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