New mom pleads guilty to dumping her newborn in motel toilet

GOSHEN – A Town of Newburgh woman pled guilty before Orange County Court Judge Craig Stephen Brown on Thursday to an assault charge for abandoning her newborn son in the toilet bowl of a motel room Teresa Smith, 23, was occupying.

On November 1, 2018, motel workers at the Budget Inn Motel on Route 9W in the Town of Newburgh found blood, other bodily fluids and soiled clothing in the room and called the police.

Newburgh Town officers discovered the baby in the toilet bowl and immediately rendered first aid. The infant was rushed to the hospital and survived.

Prosecutors argued that moments after Smith gave birth she left him in the toilet bowl and vacated the room with no intention of returning or caring for the child.

The district attorney’s office will recommend she be sentenced to 15 years in state prison and five years of post-release supervision as per the plea agreement.

The judge said he would sentence her to no more than 12 years in state prison and five years of post-release supervision.

At the time Smith pled guilty, she admitted that her actions of abandoning the newborn in the toilet bowl and leaving the motel room caused serious physical injury to the infant which created a substantial risk of death.

“Infants are the most innocent of victims,” said District Attorney David Hoovler. “We can only hope that there are no long-lasting physical effects which will be suffered by the victim in this case.” The DA said it is “hard to comprehend what could drive any mother to intend to harm her own baby by abandoning him under these circumstances.”

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