GLEN BURNIE, Md. (AP) — The mother of a newborn girl who was found abandoned in the woods has been sentenced to 18 months of incarceration but may be able to serve much of the time in a residential facility.
The Capital newspaper reports that Anne Arundel County Circuit Judge Stacy McCormack last week sentenced Olivia Dee-Rose Thompson to 10 years in jail, suspended after 18 months.
Thompson's lawyer, Debra Saltz, said the judge left open an opportunity to reconsider Thompson’s sentence. McCormack scheduled a hearing in August to weigh the possibility of Thompson being released to a residential treatment program if she successfully completes a specialized program at a detention center that offers mental health case management services for female inmates with a history of mental illness, trauma or addiction.
Thompson, 20, was charged with attempted murder and child abuse after a passerby discovered a newborn infant in the woods off the Baltimore and Annapolis Trail last July. When questioned by police, Thompson said she placed the infant outside her Glen Burnie home “almost immediately” after giving birth in her bathroom, saying she did not know she was pregnant.
Saltz said Thompson was scared of her parents finding out about her pregnancy, and that she had been taken advantage of by the infant’s father.
The baby girl was outside for about five hours and was covered in ants, Assistant State’s Attorney Anastasia Prigge said last month, arguing for Thompson to be sentenced to 10 to 18 years. Prigge said the baby is “doing well,” and her father was seeking custody of the child.
.Maryland is a “Safe Haven” state, meaning it allows distressed parents who are unwilling to care for infants to safely give up custody at a hospital or police station with no questions asked.