Pa. grandma avoids jail for sitting on baby

February 9, 2011 6:35:18 AM PST
A Pittsburgh woman who accidentally sat on and smothered her 1-month-old granddaughter has been sentenced to two years' probation.

Allegheny County prosecutors say 50-year-old Elane Springs was sleeping when she accidentally shifted and sat on the baby while asleep. Authorities say Springs didn't immediately notice sitting on the baby and failed to call 911 immediately once she realized what had happened while she was babysitting the child on Sept. 18, 2008.

Springs wasn't charged until last year after an extensive investigation and on Tuesday pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter and endangering the welfare of a child.

Common Pleas Judge Jill Rangos called the case a "clear tragedy" with "no evidence of neglect, or certainly any intent." Rangos also noted Springs had no criminal record in imposing the probation sentence.