PLYMOUTH, Ind. — A judge has sentenced the mother of a murdered 11-month-old northern Indiana girl to 2 1/2 years in jail.
(NOTE: The video above is from a previous story about the Mercedes Lain case.)
Jennifer Coburn, 33, of Plymouth, pleaded guilty last month to neglect of a dependent under a plea agreement. She was sentenced Friday, the South Bend Tribune reported.
Police found the body of 11-month-old Mercedes Lain in a wooded area near the Marshall-Starke County line last August.
The child's father, Kenneth Lain of Grovertown, pleaded guilty last month to neglect of a dependent under a plea agreement. He also was sentenced to 2 1/2 years in prison.
A family friend, Justin Miller, 37, was recently sentenced to 65 years in prison after pleading guilty to murder in Mercedes’ beating death.
Lain reported Mercedes missing on Aug.15, prompting a search by local, state and federal law enforcement. Miller eventually told police he hit and killed Mercedes at a home in Mishawaka and took her to a remote part of Starke County, where her body was later found.
Coburn’s sentencing marks the conclusion of the three criminal cases that stemmed from Mercedes’ disappearance and murder.
“This is the last chapter in the sad, sad tale of Mercedes’ short life,” Marshall County Prosecutor Nelson Chipman said. “Any time there’s a child victim who doesn’t deserve anything near that life, let alone the end of life, that leaves a scar.”