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Judge Reduces Charges Against Slain Child's Mother

Last updated on Saturday, June 22, 2013

(CROWN POINT) - A northwest Indiana woman who left her 2-year-old daughter with a couple who later killed the child will face less time in prison if she is convicted after a judge reduced neglect charges against her.

The Times reports the judge Thursday ruled that prosecutors could not adequately prove 31-year-old Melissa Swiontek knew she was placing the toddler in danger.

Swiontek could have faced 20 to 50 years in prison if found guilty, but the lesser charges carry a sentence of six months to three years.

Swiontek goes to trial Monday in connection with the 2009 slaying of her daughter, Jada Justice, whose body was found encased in cement in a swamp about two weeks after a relative reported her missing.

The babysitters were later convicted in Jada's death.

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