Mother Sentenced to 43 Years in Prison for Killing Daughter

January 19, 2017 Updated: January 19, 2017

A suburban Chicago woman who pleaded guilty to killing her daughter with a punch in the stomach has been sentenced to 43 years in prison.

Nicholette Lawrence of Waukegan pleaded guilty last year to first-degree murder for killing Raashanai Coley in September 2014.

Prosecutors say the 11-year-old girl weighed 55 to 67 pounds when she was punched by Lawrence. The force of the blow caused the child’s ribs to puncture her stomach lining. The 11-year-old died two days later at a hospital.

Lake County Circuit Judge James Booras asked “how can humans do this?” as he sentenced the 35-year-old Lawrence. He ruled her sentence must be served entirely, making her ineligible for good-behavior time off.

Lawrence is getting credit for more than two years of incarceration in the Lake County Jail.

“Who would lock a child up in a closet furnished only with a sink and feed the child only a bowl of cereal a day?” Judge James Booras asked aloud, according to a court transcript obtained by People magazine.

“It’s why I refer to her as a ‘monster mom,’ ” a transcript quotes Booras as saying regarding Lawrence. “I saw photos of the autopsy. The state made reference she came from a prison camp. No. It looked like she came out of concentration prison camp. How can humans do this? Animals don’t do this to their own.”

Epoch Times contributed to this report.