Geneva Walters enters guilty plea, admits role in infant's death

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by Claudia Coffey

WHAS11.com

Posted on May 15, 2013 at 5:24 PM

LOUISVILLE, Ky -- A Louisville mother charged in the death of her 8-month-old son has changed her plea in return for a lighter sentence.

In return for pleading guilty, Geneva Walters will serve a sentence of just 60 days.

There have been several twists and turns in the sad case involving Walters and Wednesday it reached a final dramatic end when she changed her plea to guilty in Jefferson County Court.

Walters said she gave her 8-month-old son Michael Xavier Cowherd an adult dose of a common allergy medication in January 2010 and then put the infant in a bathtub. She said she left him there for a few minutes, and when she returned, he had drowned. The child's grandparents spoke out many times at hearings.

"It is our responsibility as a parent to protect our children," the child's grandfather, Michael Cowherd, said in September 2011.

In a 2011, Walters' lawyer asked for probation due to a lack of criminal history.

"She wants to express her sincere apology to the family.  She knows she can't undo what happened, but she thinks about her child everyday," said Joe Mills, an attorney for Walters/, in September 2011.

The judge denied that plea deal and recommended a 5 year sentence behind bars. Walters' attorney's instead opted for a jury trial and, if found guilty, she could have been sentenced to up to 20 years in prison.

As part of her plea Wednesday, prosecutors recommended a five year sentence, but Walters will be released on shock probation after serving 60 days, and can stay out of jail as long as she stays out of trouble. 

The formal sentencing is set for June.


 

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