Â A mum who killed her daughter by giving her a fatal dose of morphine via her breast milk has been jailed for 20 years.
Former nurse Stephanie Greene, 39, from South Carolina, obtained the powerful drug, and other painkillers without telling doctors she was pregnant.
Her six-week-old daughter Alexis died in November 2010 and a toxicology report found a lethal amount of morphine and three other drugs in the baby’s system.
She was found guilty of homicide by child abuse, involuntary manslaughter and unlawful neglect of a child.
“This is not an indictment on breast feeding,” said solicitor Barry Barnette.
“She loved her drugs more than she loved her baby.”
Greene’s defense argued that not enough of the drugs could have passed through her breast milk to kill the baby, but no other evidence for the child’s death existed, according to the prosecutor.
A medical expert testified that a child receiving an overdose of morphine would not gain weight. When Greene’s baby died, she weighed only four ounces more than her birth weight.
“It fit the pattern,” Barnette said. “She’s a nurse. She knew the dangers.”
Greene faced a possible life sentence and must serve at least 16 years in prison under South Carolina law.
She still faces 38 charges of fraudulently obtaining drugs, Barnette said.