Child abuse case appeal: The difference between ingested and injected

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HASTINGS, Neb. (KSNB) - Attorneys for a Hastings woman who faces a long prison term for child abuse argued the difference between the words "ingested" and "injected" in a brief filed with the Nebraska court of appeals.

Brittany Hatch, 24, was sentenced in August to 19 years in prison for felony child abuse.

Court records indicate that in November 2016, police found a baby girl unresponsive in Hatch's residence. Doctor's later found bruises, cuts inside the baby's mouth and burns on her feet. They also found a large quality of methamphetamine in the baby's urine.

In the brief filed with the court of appeals, Hatch's attorneys argued that the judge incorrectly assumed that she had injected her baby with meth. The attorneys argue instead that the baby ingested or swallowed the meth by accident.

They further argue that Hatch should be placed on probation for being a neglectful mother. And they also claim Hatch recognized that she was not fit to care for the baby because she was given up for adoption.

An appeals court hearing date on Hatch's case is pending.

Hatch's partner at the time, John Brown, 31, was convicted of felony child abuse this summer and was sentenced to 30 years in prison.

He is also fighting his sentence in the court of appeals. A hearing date for his case with the higher court has not yet been scheduled.

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