A New York woman will go to prison after admitting to dumping her newborn son in a motel toilet shortly after giving birth to him last year, resulting in his hospitalization for two weeks.
The Times Herald-Record reported that Teresa Rose Smith, 23, was sentenced to 10 years for a November 1 incident at a Town of Newburgh motel room. After giving birth, Smith got dressed, charged her cellphone, and got a cab to pick up heroin.
Noting that Smith was experiencing withdrawal, lawyer Donalda Gillies said Smith’s birth was fast and “almost hard to understand” in her drug-addicted state, according to the news outlet.
While Gillies claimed Smith left the newborn in a place where he could be found, Senior Assistant District Attorney Christopher Kelly told the court that the boy survived because motel staff quickly discovered the bloody room and alerted police.
Pleading guilty to first-degree assault, Smith reportedly relinquished her parental rights during her son’s two-week hospitalization so the infant could be adopted. Smith will undergo five years of post-release supervision after completing her 10-year prison sentence.
“There is no excuse for her conduct, which deserves a 25-year sentence, but for divine intervention in the form of the rescuers,” Judge Craig Brown said Tuesday, according to the Herald-Record.
“She put the most vulnerable being imaginable at risk. She chose heroin over her child. If nothing else, this case should be the poster child for people to avoid the use of heroin.”
[Featured image: Teresa Smith/Orange County Jail]