Guilty plea in death of newborn

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GOSHEN – A 23-year-old Port Jervis woman who gave birth and left her newborn baby girl to die in a vacant Port Jervis lot pled guilty to a charge of manslaughter before Orange County Court Judge Craig Stephen Brown on Friday.

When sentenced in February 2022, the District Attorney’s Office will recommend that Nicole Layman be sentenced to five to 15 years in state prison.

On the night of November 12, 2019, Port Jervis Police found the dead newborn in a vacant lot adjacent to Horneck Avenue.

Investigation determined the baby had been born that night and had died of exposure to the elements because Layman had left her there without notifying anyone.

“The individual circumstances surrounding an offender’s state of mind, including their capacity to truly appreciate the seriousness of their offense beforehand, and whether or not they engaged in extensive planning, are all proper sentencing considerations,” said District Attorney David Hoovler.  “While consigning an infant to die of exposure is, by definition, unnecessary, illegal, and barbaric, I believe that a sentence of five to 15 years in state prison in this case would strike a just balance between the seriousness of the conduct, and some mitigating factors attributable to this particular defendant. It is important that everyone be aware that help is available within Orange County for those who believe they are unable to care for their children.”