• New Jersey woman who accidentally smothered baby while drunk gets 4 years

    By: Ann Smajstrla, Cox Media Group National Content Desk


    MT. HOLLY, N.J. - A New Jersey woman who accidentally smothered her infant son when she fell asleep, drunk, on top of him has been sentenced to four years in prison.

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    Melissa Johnson, 39, pleaded guilty Thursday to second-degree endangering the welfare of a child as part of a plea agreement with the Burlington County Prosecutor’s Office, the office said in a statement.

    In February 2015, one of Johnson’s relatives went to her house to find her asleep on a couch with her 3-month-old son wedged beneath her, prosecutors said. Paramedics responded and found the baby unresponsive.

    An investigation found that Johnson had been “consuming alcohol for several hours” before she was discovered, prosecutors said.

    An autopsy showed the child died from being accidentally asphyxiated.

    Johnson was originally indicted on a manslaughter charge before taking the plea agreement, the Cherry Hill Courier-Post reported.



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