What to Know
- A suburban Philadelphia mother was sentenced Tuesday to 25 to 50 years in the alleged poisoning death of her 2-year-old son a year ago.
- Jennifer Clarey was sentenced after pleading no contest Tuesday to third-degree murder and and child endangerment.
- Bucks County prosecutors said toxic levels of two medications were found in the boy's blood and in his sippy cup.
A Pennsylvania mother was sentenced Tuesday to 25 to 50 years in prison a year after she was accused of killing her 2-year-old son by placing Vicodin in his sippy cup.
Jennifer Clarey, 43, was sentenced after pleading no contest Tuesday to third-degree murder and child endangerment in the August 2018 death of Mazikeen Clarey.
"You were there to protect this child, and instead, you were so reckless and thoughtless and selfish as to take this child's life before he ever had a chance to explore everything that life has to offer," Bucks County Court Judge Clyde W. Waite said.
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Police called to Clarey's Tullytown home found the boy and also reported finding Clarey with apparent self-inflicted wounds. Bucks County prosecutors said toxic levels of two medications were found in the boy's blood and in his sippy cup— which they stressed had a childproof lid.
Police found an empty 120-count bottle of Vicodin that had been prescribed to Clarey seven days earlier and an empty 4-ounce bottle of children's Benadryl. A toxicology report concluded the boy died of toxic levels of hydrocodone and diphenhydramine HCI, the active ingredient in Benadryl.
Clarey declined the judge's offer to speak but said in response to questioning that she had been hospitalized for mental health treatment four times, the last time shortly before her son's death, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported.
Clarey's family, including her adult daughter, were in court but said nothing as they sat together in tears, the paper reported.