COOPERSTOWN, NY – The mother accused of killing her babies by falling asleep on them has been found not guilty.
Kimberly Steeley of Decatur had been charged with two counts of manslaughter in the deaths of her twin infants, Bonde and Liam.
After the trial that lasted six days, an Otsego County jury took approximately three hours Monday to render a verdict of not guilty on both counts.
Police say Bonde, a girl, was found unconcious on June 5, 2018 at their home around 4:30 a.m. and later died at an Albany hospital. 11 days later a boy named Liam was also found unconscious in the same home, also early in the morning, and later died.
Prosecutors alleged Steeley smothered her children by falling asleep on top of them. The defense claimed there was no explanation for the babies' deaths.
Steeley had admitted she fell asleep while in bed with both children. She testified in her own defense on Friday.
Steeley's defense attorney Andrew Van Buren reminded the jury during his closing argument Friday morning that the autopsies of both children both said the cause and manner of death was undetermined and the mechanism of death was probable asphyxiation.
Van Buren told the jury they couldn't convict on 'probable'. He says if there isn't a ruling on a cause of death in each case, how can they rule that Steeley caused their deaths.