A southeast Iowa mother convicted of starving her infant son to death received a ten year prison sentence Friday.
25-years-old Angel Poole was arrested in March 2017 after a lengthy investigation into the death of her infant son, Judah Wessels.
Prosecutors say Wessels was a seven-pound, healthy baby when he was born in May 2016. At the time of his death, which was about two months later, Wessels weighed just five pounds.
Poole missed several check-ups for Judah and reportedly told police that she “never got round to it”.
When the baby started to have difficulty breathing, Poole called emergency services but Judah died in hospital an hour later.
An autopsy said he was “markedly malnourished” and died of starvation and dehydration.
A photo of Judah was published on his dad’s Facebook page which showed him looking underweight and Poole said: “He was so handsome, like his daddy.”
The sentencing came after that case had been pushed back several times. Previously, the defense requested a delay so they could find and consult with a neonatal expert witness. Another delay occurred when two prosecution witnesses were unavailable for trial, prompting the Area Prosecutions Division of the Attorney General’s office to take over the case.
Another delay happened when the prosecution asked for the initial autopsy to be removed from the trial. M.E. Jonathon Thompson, who performed the autopsy on the baby, wrote that “it was unknown if the mother understood the progressive decline of the infant’s health status.”
Poole eventually ended up taking a plea deal to a lesser charge. Prosecutors initially charged Poole with child endangerment causing death, which carries a sentence of 25 years in prison. Poole pleaded guilty to child endangerment causing serious injury, which carries a lesser sentence of 10 years.