A California woman who allegedly tried to kill her baby inside a McDonald’s restaurant has pleaded no contest to child endangerment.
Sarah Lockner, 26, of Redwood City, faces up to four years in prison for the charge, KPIX reported on Jan. 15.
Lockner was charged with attempting to drown her infant after giving birth inside a McDonald’s bathroom on Sept. 4, 2017, said officials. She was a cashier during her shift when the incident happened.
NO CONTEST PLEA: A Redwood City woman, who faced charges of premeditated attempted murder, now faces a lesser charge….
A co-worker who went inside the bathroom to check on Lockner found the disturbing scene, but Lockner asked the person not to call the police.
However, the employee called the police, who found that the boy had no pulse and wasn’t breathing.
The co-worker told police that they heard the toilet flush.
I'm confused. This woman has been arrested for trying to drown her newborn son in a McDonald's toilet, but Planned…
The boy was taken to the hospital and was placed in a medically induced coma and survived, KPIX reported.
Lockner claimed that she had no idea she was pregnant. Later this year, she is scheduled to appear in court for sentencing.
“Lockner is said to have been working an evening shift at the fast-food restaurant when she made repeated trips to the restroom that evening, citing stomach pain. At around 10 p.m., her manager suggested she go home but, even after clocking out of her shift, Lockner stayed at the restaurant in the restroom, according to prosecutors,” according to the San Mateo Daily Journal in a writeup of the incident.
She was initially charged with attempted murder, but she pleaded no contest to the felony child endangerment plea, said prosecutors.
District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe told the San Jose Mercury News on Jan. 16 that the child is living with his father’s aunt and is apparently developing fine.
“The hope is that the child will recover fully,” he said.
Lockner, according to prosecutors, gave birth about five years ago to another child. At the time, Lockner gave birth at home and claimed she didn’t know she was pregnant.
“The outcome here is a reasonable one,” Wagstaffe told the Daily Journal of Lockner’s no contest plea and four-year sentencing. “It does hold her accountable for the harm she tried to inflict on this baby.”
“It’s a real sad story. It’s a real sad story,” Wagstaffe said in 2017 after the arrest, SFGate reported. “She said she didn’t know she was pregnant.”
One of The Nation’s Most Serious Concerns
According to a report published by the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (pdf), around 3.5 million children in 2016 were the subjects of at least one maltreatment report to authorities.
“Child abuse is one of the nation’s most serious concerns,” the authors of the report wrote.
About 17 percent of those reports were substantiated, and the department said that there were an estimated 676,000 victims of child abuse and neglect. That amounts to 9.1 victims per 1,000 children.
Children in their first year of life had the highest rate of victimization at 24.8 per 1,000 children, the report said.
About three-fourths of the cases were neglect, and about 18 percent were physical abuse. Some children suffered from multiple forms of maltreatment, the HHS said.
The Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline is available at 1-800-422-4453 or at Childhelp.org.