Grandma gets prison for toddler’s overdose death

MUSKEGON, Mich. (WOOD) — A 52-year-old Muskegon grandmother who pleaded guilty to manslaughter for her granddaughter’s overdose death is heading to prison for what she called a “terrible mistake.’’

Latisha Jones was sentenced to 2.5 to 15 years in prison for manslaughter stemming from the toddler’s death.

Jones admitted that she found her heroin spoon in the baby’s mouth while she was babysitting her grandchildren.

Eva Jones died Oct. 22. She was 14 months old. An autopsy found fentanyl, norfentanyl, benzodiazepenines and cocaine in the baby’s system.

Records: Grandmother’s heroin spoon in baby’s mouth before death

Jones was initially charged with open murder. She pleaded guilty in March to manslaughter.

Muskegon County Circuit Court Judge Annette Smedley on Thursday credited Jones for the 198 days she has spent in jail since her arrest in late October.

She was babysitting the 14-month-old and two other grandchildren while the children’s mother was at work, court records show. Jones admitted that she used heroin and cocaine daily and had used heroin a few hours before going to her daughter’s house to babysit, records show. She told police she placed a used needle and a spoon she uses to heat heroin in her coat pocket, which she hung on a chair in her daughter’s living room.

After the baby was found dead, she put on her coat and realized the spoon was gone, a probable cause affidavit states.

“Latisha then realized it was her drug spoon that Eva had in her mouth,” according to the affidavit. “Latisha believes the heroin on her spoon was what killed Eva.”

An obituary for the child described Eva as a “happy baby.”

“She would go to sleep with a smile and wake with an even brighter smile,” according to the online obituary.

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