Mollie Shouse, 29, who was convicted of wanton murder for leaving her 2-year-old son to die in her sweltering car while she was passed out on drugs in her apartment, waits to be escorted from a Louisville,Ky., courtroom.(David R. Lutman/Special to The Courier-Journal)
By USA TODAY
A Kentucky woman has been sentenced to 35 years in prison for leaving her 2-year-old son to die in a sweltering car while she was passed out on drugs in her apartment, The (Louisville) Courier-Journal reports.
KidsAndCars.org, a national organization that collects data on such cases, says the sentence is believed to be one of the longest in the country for leaving a child in a vehicle, the newspaper reports.
Mollie Shouse, 29, of Louisville, was convicted of wanton murder for leaving her son, Kenton, in a car for 12 hours as the temperature inside climbed to 130 degrees.
"You have to take responsibility for this," Jefferson Circuit Judge Olu Stevens told Shouse, noting that she had lied repeatedly to police about the May, 2011 tragedy. "You are responsible for this life that is no more. I didn't see anywhere ... where you showed remorse for what your child went through, what he suffered at your hands."
Shouse showed little emotion at her sentencing Wednesday and did not speak on her own behalf.
Afterward, she looked back in the courtroom at her family, who had pleaded for leniency, the newspaper reports.
Assistant Commonwealth's Attorney Erin McKenzie said the 35-year-sentence was more than appropriate, because Kenton, strapped in his car seat, "suffered for hours upon hours while his skin seared against the hot plastic of the buckle between his legs."