DENVER (CBS4) – A mother who was on the computer as her infant son drowned in a bathtub will spend more than three decades behind bars.
Muriel Keer was sentenced on Friday. She was charged with child abuse resulting in death after her 10-month-old son drowned nearly two years ago.
The judge gave the mother 36 years in jail for the death of her son but said he doesn’t believe she left her son in the tub maliciously but rather forgot him there because of her drug use.
Prosecutors say 10-month-old Aldrich was left alone in the tub for at least 16.5 minutes.
Keer’s attorney said he has witnessed what the death of the little boy has done to the single mother and that the child was the center of her universe. Prosecutors disagreed. They pointed out that Keer tested positive for methamphetamine and cocaine five times while pregnant with her son who was born while she was in custody.
Prosecutors also say Keer failed Aldrich but the system failed him too. While Keer was on probation she tested positive for drugs 19 times and didn’t show up an additional 30 times for testing, yet no one revoked her probation.
“She was imploding and none of us in the system paid attention, and this 10-month-old child is no longer with us because of it,” prosecutor Adrienne Greener said. “Nobody leaves a child alone in a bathtub period. People walk away for maybe 30 seconds sometimes and it’s a bad decision … but they don’t leave a child in a tub for 16.5 minutes.”
The judge said the child’s death was accident waiting to happen given his mother’s drug history.