Maine mom who pleaded guilty to her child’s overdose death begins 4-year sentence
A Maine woman who pleaded guilty in the overdose death of her 1-year-old son has begun serving a sentence of four years in prison for manslaughter
HOULTON, Maine (AP) — A Maine woman who pleaded guilty in the overdose death of her 1-year-old son has begun serving a prison sentence for manslaughter.
Mariah Dobbins, 29, of Easton, was ordered last month to serve four years under a plea agreement following the March 19, 2022, death of her son, Jaden Raymond. Maine State Police released few details at the time, but an autopsy later revealed the boy died from a fentanyl overdose.
Dobbins told police she and her two sons had fallen asleep watching TV and that Jayden was unresponsive when she woke up. Law enforcement officials accused Dobbins of being inattentive to the point of being criminally negligent.
Defense attorney Steve Smith said prosecutors wanted a harsh penalty following a number of high-profile deaths of children. Dobbins was sentenced July 20 to 12 years in prison, but with most of the sentence suspended.
“The state wanted to make an example of Ms. Dobbins because there seems to be a wave of these cases,” Smith said Tuesday.
The Maine Department of Health and Human Service came under criticism following a spate of children’s deaths from abuse or neglect. There also have been several cases of babies and children overdosing, typically when they ingested drugs that were left in the open, amid an epidemic of opioid abuse in the state.