SPRING VALLEY, N.Y. (PIX11) – A New York mother was sentenced to prison time and mandatory deportation Monday after she pleaded guilty to strangling her hours-old son and dumping his body in a recycling container, authorities said.
Maria Oliva Guaman-Guaman, now 24, was sentenced to 12 years in state prison with five years’ post-release supervision, according to the Rockland County District Attorney’s Office.
A native of Ecuador, Guaman-Guaman is in the U.S. illegally and will be deported when she completes her sentence, the DA’s office said.
“Today’s sentence brings to a close a disturbing case of a mother senselessly and violently killing her newborn child,” Rockland County District Attorney Thomas P. Zugibe said in a statement after the sentence was handed down.
“This crime should serve as a reminder that under New York’s Safe Haven law, a parent may anonymously surrender an unwanted infant to personnel in a safe place, such as a hospital, a police station or a fire station, without repercussions.”
Prosecutors said Guaman-Guaman gave birth to her son at her home Nov. 12, 2013.
Soon after, she admitted, she strangled the infant, stuffed his lifeless body — with his umbilical cord still attached — into a plastic bag and dumped it in a recycling container outside a store in Spring Valley, Zugibe said.
The dumpster with the baby’s body was taken later that day to a recycling center where a worker made the heartbreaking discovery. The child was found among discarded cardboard, the DA’s office said.
DNA led detectives to the child’s mother, prosecutors said without elaborating. Guaman-Guaman was arrested nearly a month later on Dec. 10, 2012
Two independent psychiatrists – one hired by the defense, the other by the prosecution – examined Guaman-Guaman and found she has Moderate Intellectual Disability and an IQ of 53 after having been kicked in the head by a horse when she was 7 years old, prosecutors said.
Both psychiatrists determined that Guaman-Guaman was “under the influence of an extreme emotional disturbance” when the baby was killed.