An Ohio woman who was found not guilty of murdering her newborn was sentenced on Friday to three years of “community control” after being convicted of abusing a corpse. Brooke Skylar Richardson, now 20, was on Thursday cleared of three charges, including aggravated murder and involuntary manslaughter, but found guilty of gross abuse of a corpse. She was accused of killing her newborn baby and burying her in the backyard in an unmarked grave.
Warren County Judge Donald Oda also sentenced Richardson to seven days in jail, but credited her for time served during the trial. If she violates community control, he said, the 20-year-old will spend 12 months behind bars. “Your actions before, during and after birth, you showed a grotesque disregard for life,” Oda said before sentencing. “I know in my heart that if you had made different decisions Annabelle would be here today.”
Multiple people gave victim statements before the sentencing, including the mother of the baby’s father, Tracy Johnson, and Richardson’s father. The baby’s maternal grandmother said the incident was painful for her family. “Her selfish decision was not her only choice,” Johnson said. “She had a way out.”