A Pennsylvania mother has been sentenced to 20 to 40 years behind bars for suffocating her toddler daughter to death more than a year ago.
As CBS News reports, 27-year-old Adriene Williams, of Wilkinsburg, initially rejected a plea deal that would have sent her to prison for 15 to 30 years.
Ever since her daughter’s tragic death in June 2015, Williams has maintained that she is innocent, but on Tuesday, the judge had no time for her act.
“You took a baby out of safety, put her in harm’s way, then suffocated her,” Allegheny County Judge Anthony Mariani told her.
Prosecutors have long since believed that Williams asphyxiated her 3-year-old daughter, Adrionna, but they still do not know where or how it happened.
Adrionna’s tiny body was found by a dog walker in a wooded area of Swissvale on June 14, just 40 minutes after her family reported her missing.
According to CBS News, Williams’ family remembers Williams seemed annoyed with Adrionna the night before she disappeared.
Authorities say Adrionna followed her mother onto their porch as she was trying to leave for work, as she worked nights as a security guard.
Family members also reportedly told police that Williams was upset that she had to help Adrionna clean herself up after she used the bathroom.
Those close to the family described Williams as a stressed single mom, who seemed to be having a hard time juggling motherhood, her job, and the criminal justice degree that she’d been pursuing.
According to CBS News, surveillance footage and cell phone records showed that Williams had driven toward the area where Adrionna’s body was eventually found, despite telling police that she was working in a completely different area.
Police also found colored paper clips inside Williams’ car that had also been discovered near Adrionna’s body.
Also discovered in Williams’ car were mud splotches and her work uniform, which was stained with watermelon—a snack that Adrionna had been seen eating right before she went missing.
After Adrionna’s body was found, Williams shared an emotional plea on Facebook, begging the public to help her find her little girl’s killer.
She reportedly wrote: “Give me my angel back, please” and “Mommy loves you, my angel.”