Woman Not Given Jail Time After Leaving Baby In Toilet

Discussion in 'THREAD ARCHIVES' started by luvablelilmonster, Dec 14, 2012.

  1. A South Carolina judge decided against prison time for a woman who left her newborn near death in the toilet of a sports arena after giving birth during the circus.

    Jessica Blackham was sentenced to a year of home confinement and three years of probation Wednesday after pleading guilty to infliction of great bodily injury to a child.

    The 6½-pound newborn baby was likely in the toilet for 90 minutes and was near death before he was found by a cleaning crew in the stall filled with blood and other gore. His head was barely above the water and his body temperature was 85 degrees, prosecutor Betty Strom said.

    Blackham, who has an older daughter, said she never knew she was pregnant for a second time. She said she doesn't remember giving birth in the cramped stall while her friends and family texted to see if she was OK as she missed the second act of the circus in February 2011.

    Blackham brought her 4-year-old daughter to the stall with her, but texted her family to take the girl from the bathroom because she was having stomach problems, Strom said.

    Judge Ned Miller asked the 26-year-old mother, who had no prior criminal record, why she never asked for help.

    "I don't know. The only thing I can think of is I didn't realize what was going on or because of my loss of blood I wasn't thinking clearly," said Blackham, who added she was told in the hospital she nearly died from the blood loss from injuries she suffered giving birth.

    Blackham graduated from a private Baptist high school and had a job at Kmart before her arrest.

    She went to a doctor the next day because she was heavily bleeding.

    Miller, who took time out from hearing guilty pleas in crack cocaine and methamphetamine cases to hear Blackham's plea, took about 90 seconds to
    consider his sentence.

    "Miss Blackham, you are not standard fare up here and I think your attorney's assessment that you will not be back is accurate," Miller said.

    Prosecutors made no recommendation for a sentence to the judge. Blackham faced up to 20 years in prison.

    Blackham was given a five-year prison sentence, but she won't serve it as long as she successfully completes her home confinement and probation. She also was ordered to get counseling and face random drug tests.

    The baby is developing normally and Blackham gave up her parental rights to him, authorities said. She has joint custody of her older daughter.
    South Carolina has a "safe haven" law that allows mothers to leave newborns in safe places such as a hospital or doctor's office without being prosecuted.

    Blackham apologized before she was sentenced.

    "I love my son dearly. And it kills me to know in the first few crucial moments of his life I was unable to provide him with the care that he needed," Blackham said. "I thank God somebody was there to save him, save his precious life."
  2. That would freak me the fuck out if I was a cleaner.

    And WOOOOAH there, Luvable. Easy on the news stories. It wouldn't be fair to the other topic starters if you pushed all their discussions off the first page.

    *shoots a tranq dart in Luvable's leg*
  3. I'm sorry there's just so much interesting and stupid stuff!! Maybe I should dwindle it down to one or two a day...?

    Hey, what was that f-- -Mewls and passes out-
  4. Well that is quite horrible, but I guess I cannot fault the judge for their decision. The woman was clearly not in the right state of mind at the time, but I think that the punishment is too lenient. I mean, how does one not notice their own pregnancy? I know that denial can be a very strong force, but that is just stretching my suspension of disbelief. Also, rather than just giving her home confinement, I would have put her through a psychological evaluation, because it is definitely not healthy that one does not notice the changes in their own body.
  5. Not that I'm standing up for her, panicking can do some stupid things to the mind. Even more so if you think you're going to bleed to death. Maybe she didn't hear any crying, so she did some survival mode and put herself first. The lack of thinking that went on amazes me.... I think the punishment would be more fitting if her son was actually taken away from her, not just willingly given up. That would be worse that any amount of jail time.
  6. There's a show they give on TLC called, "I didn't know I was pregnant." Some women never get their periods or get irregular periods. Some remain skinny or gain like 5-10 pounds and wouldn't know until they either get extreme stomach pain or they're giving birth. Apparently it happens often enough for them to make a TV show, lol.

    It's kind of bothersome that she's giving up the child she loves so much and kind of makes me wonder if maybe she just panicked and didn't want the child. I mean, teen moms sometimes dump their child in dumpsters or toilets so it's kind of interesting.
  7. I've heard of cases like this where women have no idea they're pregnant and they end up giving birth at the toilet. :/ It's crazy to me because of how obvious some of the symptoms make it, but every lady's body is different. Some of them take medicines or have irregular cycles that would make a pregnancy seem so unlikely, I guess. I once heard of a woman who was taking antibiotics, which interfered with her birth control. There were some other things involved, but the ending result was having a baby in her bathroom. >__<

    It's disappointing to see how all of this went for that mother. I agree that she should be put into some therapy classes and given other means of support so she can become a more fitting parent. Deciding a suitable punishment must have been really tough for this sitch...