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Mother who smothered baby after heavy drinking gets prison

March 21, 2019

MOUNT HOLLY, N.J. (AP) — Authorities say a New Jersey woman who accidentally smothered her 3-month-old son after a night of heavy drinking was sentenced to prison time.

The Burlington County Prosecutor’s Office said Thursday that 39-year-old Melissa Johnson was sentenced to four years.

The Delran woman had pleaded guilty to endangering the welfare of a child in exchange for the sentence. The baby died of asphyxiation.

Emergency workers responded to Johnson’s home Feb. 18, 2015, for a report of an unresponsive child. Officials said a relative had found Johnson asleep on the couch with the infant partially wedged underneath her.

The prosecutor said Johnson had been drinking alcohol for several hours.