A plea agreement Friday sends a woman to prison for 28 years for a death in her Maplewood in-home daycare. The 3 month old suffocated in November 2018.
Six other kids were in the daycare, some in pack-and-plays with boxes or shelves over them so they couldn’t get out. 42-year-old Laura Minnick was also drunk at the time.
The parents of the child whose death Minnick caused addressed the court.
“I am here to speak for her because she cannot,” the girl’s mother said. “We walk around with holes in our hearts.” Of the defendant, she said, “The pain she caused is a lifetime sentence for all of us.”
The court asked the parents if the sentence, which was at the low end of the spectrum, was acceptable.
“Part of us wants this to be over,” the child’s father said. “It’s never going to be good enough. Is it good enough? No. Is it ever going to be good enough? No. But it’s a point of closure.”
“As the parents of this innocent victim said so eloquently, no punishment is sufficient for causing the death of this child, but this prison sentence does offer some closure,” said St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney Wesley Bell. “We grieve with them and wish all the best for them and their children.”