Mother of Fatally Beaten Son Gets 16 Years

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BELLEVILLE, Ill. (AP) _ A judge in southwestern Illinois has ordered a 30-year-old woman to spend 16 years in prison on charges related to the Christmas Eve 2005 death of her 6-year-old son.

Starr Lohman was sentenced Tuesday in St. Clair County. She’d already pleaded guilty to a charge of aggravated battery of a child.

Ryon Smith’s body was found on the bedroom floor of the Cahokia home Lohman shared with her boyfriend, Lee Crutchfield. Authorities say the child had been beaten repeatedly and died of blunt trauma to the head and torso.

Crutchfield had argued the boy died after suffering an epileptic seizure. He’s been convicted of murder and is serving a life sentence.

Lohman testified she saw Crutchfield hit the boy 20 or 30 times before he died.

AP-WF-08-29-12 1258GMT<

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