A Baltimore woman admitted to murdering a sleepless baby girl while she was working at a daycare.
In the emotional hearing Tuesday, Leah Walden, 24, pleaded guilty to the murder of 8-month-old Reese Bowman last year at a daycare center downtown.
Walden was sentenced to 70 years in prison.
The two-hour hearing was a tearful and gut-wrenching ordeal, which even moved the Baltimore Circuit Court to tears.
“I’m just reflecting on everything I heard,” Judge Althea Handy said, according to the Baltimore Sun. “There are tears everywhere in this courtroom."
In her plea admitted she willfully and deliberately killed the 8-month-old and said it was premeditated: murder in the first degree.
“You thought about it, even though it might have been brief. Do you understand that?” Handy asked her.
“Yes,” Walden tearfully said.
In court Tuesday, Assistant State’s Attorney Anne Colt Leitess said Walden had told a co-worker, “Girl, I’m frustrated … I’m sick of this little b---. I hate this little b--- … She makes me want to punch her in the face.”
When Walden returned from lunch to Rocket Tiers Learning Center, baby Reese was in her crib wide awake during nap time. Video footage showed Walden slapped Reese in the crib and pinned the infant down with one arm while the baby kicked her legs.
Walden then snatched the girl from the crib, pushed her back down, and piled blankets over the child’s face.
Reese, who was 8 months and 19 days old, suffocated to death May 23, 2017.
Walden, who will be eligible for parole at age 59, told the judge she didn’t have training or help at the day care.
“There was not a time in my heart that I wanted this to happen,” she said, softly.
(Photo: Baltimore Police Department)
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