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USA. 19-year-old mother who threw baby in garbage can sentenced to 16 years in prison

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A 19-year-old woman who threw her newborn baby in a dumpster last year has been sentenced to 16 years in prison. “I still don’t understand why I did it because I don’t think it reflects who I am,” she told the court.

Alexis Avila of Hobbs, New State Mexico was sentenced Monday by a Lovington court to 16 years in prison for attempted first-degree murder and child abuse that resulted in grievous bodily harm, Albuquerque broadcaster KOB reported. Prosecutors had sought an 18-year sentence for Avila, citing the nature of her actions and the “lack of emotion” during the trial. Ultimately, the judge, due to her young age, reduced the sentence to 16. He also agreed with the arguments raised by the defense of the accused that Avila was struggling with mental problems.

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Alexis Avila threw her baby in the trash

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The crime occurred on January 7, 2022 in the city of Hobbs. The woman drove her car to the square where there were three large dumpsters, took a plastic bag from the car, threw it in one of the dumpsters and drove away. Surveillance cameras from a nearby store recorded the entire incident. As it later turned out, the bag contained a live child of the woman, whom she had given birth earlier the same day. The newborn was found by random people looking for useful items in the dumpsters. The child survived, although according to the prosecutor’s office, he spent five hours in very low temperatures.

Avila, then 18, told investigators that she did not know she was pregnant until the day before she gave birth, on January 6, when she reported to the hospital with abdominal pain. She also said that after giving birth, “she panicked, didn’t know what to do or who to call.” She explained that she wrapped the baby in a towel and put it in a garbage bag, then drove the car around the neighborhood until she decided to throw the baby in the bin.

“If it weren’t for luck, we’d have a murder case here,” Judge William GW Shoobridge was quoted as saying by the local website kob.com. – If it wasn’t for the coincidence and three people rummaging through the garbage cans, you’d be charged with manslaughter. It’s a miracle your baby survived that cold night. (…) If it wasn’t for modern medicine, your child would be dead by now – he said when passing the verdict. The child’s father, quoted by the same station, confirmed that the child is now doing well, but has asthma and a heart murmur. “May God forgive you,” he said to the convict.

“I know what I did was wrong and the only person I really need to apologize to is my child,” Avila told the court on Monday. “He’ll always have it in the back of his mind that I don’t love him, but that’s not true. In doing so, I took away my family’s ability to love him. I still don’t understand why I did it because I don’t think that act reflects who I am. I’m really sorry,” she added.

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