An Arkansas City woman was sentenced April 28 to 18 months of probation in connection with the death of 16-month-old Astra Abegg.
The child’s mother, Lindsay Paige Abegg, 30, was arrested and charged with first-degree murder last August.
However, she entered into a plea agreement, pleading guilty to possession of methamphetamine and possession of marijuana.
Abegg also entered a plea of no contest to the charge of aggravated endangerment of a child.
The state has “agreed to not pursue an action to terminate or sever (Abegg’s) parental rights” to her other two children, according to the plea agreement.
Attorneys and family members spent the majority of the two-hour hearing, during which she was sentenced, talking about Abegg’s character.
Proceedings will be held in the future regarding who will maintain custody of Abegg’s two other children.
Jacob Kyle Brickey, who was arrested with Abegg in August, entered a plea of guilty to voluntary manslaughter on March 10.
He was sentenced to a total of 90 months in prison in connection with Astra’s death during an appearance April 25 in Cowley County District Court in Winfield.
Brickey and Lindsay Abegg were in a relationship at the time of Astra’s death.
Abegg’s attorney, Rodney Iverson, spoke on her behalf for more than an hour during her appearance.
At the time of the child’s death, Abegg worked at Walmart and was at work when she was killed, according to Iverson.
Abegg came home the night of Aug. 17 and Brickey told her Astra just had been put to bed, but had failed to take a nap.
She looked in on the child and then made cookies with her son.
Brickey, Abegg and the children ate dinner, after which Abegg went to bed.
The next morning, Abegg woke up late and was more than an hour late to work.
Her attorney claimed she left the house in such a rush that she did not check on her children, but she did call her boss to apologize for being so late.
It was not until she was on her way home from work on Aug. 18 when Brickey told Abegg that Astra was dead, according to Iverson.
Abegg admitted to using marijuana from time to time, but Iverson claimed it did not affect her ability to be a mom.
Cowley County Attorney Chris Smith said last September, when Abegg’s bond was lowered, that it was “more the lack of care that resulted in the death of a child.”
Iverson said that she has not violated the terms of her bond since being released late last year.
Abegg has been residing in Lawrence with family since her release, has a job and has been attending a drug treatment program.
Before her sentencing, she addressed the court.
“These choices were mine,” she said. “I’ve made mistakes, but I’m a damn good person. My baby is gone. Astra is gone because I let Brickey into my house.”
Among Abegg’s family members, one who has been more outspoken than the rest.
Her grandmother, Joy Fry, spoke at length when Brickey was sentenced — when she labeled him “a snake.”
Fry said that Abegg’s parents failed her, and she in turn had failed her children.
She also said Abegg showed a pattern of bad decision-making, especially as it concerned the men in her life.
Fry claimed the fathers of Abegg’s three children all were drug users.
She said that she was present when Brickey was arrested in connection with Astra’s death, and she also said Abegg was protecting him.
“This is such a sad situation — there’s nothing I can say to ease any emotion,” said Judge Jim Pringle.
Abegg was sentenced according to the Kansas Sentencing Guidelines Act, which defines how long individuals can be sentenced according to their criminal history.
“I’m confined to what that act allows,” Pringle said.
Abegg received 12 months in jail for possession of methamphetamine, seven months for aggravated endangerment of a child and six months for possession of marijuana, as well as 18 months of probation and 12 months of post-release supervision.
She was placed on presumptive probation, which means that she is on probation, but if she were to violate the terms of probation, she would have to serve at least part of the prison sentence.
She also will have to pay $1,138 in miscellaneous court fees, in addition to her court-appointed attorney’s fees.
Abegg is prohibited from consuming alcohol or cereal malt beverage, and must follow all after-care recommendations from her drug rehabilitation program and court services.